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America, England and. Moncure D. Conway 4815 

American Girl, An. Kenneth Adair 4949 

Angell, President T. B., on ' Patriotism and International Brotherhood " 5013 
Apart From Christianism. Secularism Creates a New Responsibility. 

Georpe Jacob Holyoake 5000 

Autocosm, The Monism of. The Late Dr. Robert Lewins 4763 

Baltic, On the Dunes of the. L. Lindemann-Kussner 5087 

Barrows, Dr., in Paris 49" 

Beauty, The StrenEth of. Dr. Woods Hutchinson 4951, 4969 

Beethoven, A Pilgrimage to. Richard Wagner 5031,5043, 5048 

Belligerent Wrongs. Dr. Felix L. Oswald 5009 

Boyeseu, Professor, at Cornell University. Theodore Stanton 4812 

Brahmans, The Upanishads and the. Charles Johnston 5079 

"Buddhist Morality." HenryT. Niles 4765 

Calvin's Ethical Victim, Jacques Gruet. Moncure D.Conway 5055, 5068 

Centenary, The, of Paine's "Age of Reason." Moncure D. Conway 4759 

Chambord, Why He was Not Made King of France. Theodore Stanton.. 5143 
Christianism, Apart From. Secularism Creates a New Responsibility. 

George Jacob Holyoake 5000 

Christianity and Buddhism, Prof. Max MQller on 5071 

Christianity and Patriotism. Count Leo Tolstoi, 4967,4975,4983,4993,4999, 5007 

Church, The, and the Conventicle in England. Moncure D. Conway 5119 

Cleveland Christmas, Our. Moncure D. Conway 4775 

Coinage Law of 1878, The Dishonesty of the. Edward C. Hegeler 5104 

Comparative Mythology. Professor H. Oldenberg 4881 

Conquests of Investigation. George Jacob Holyoake 4899 

Conventicle, The Church and the, in England. Moncure D. Conway 5119 

Conway, Mr., on the Venezuelan Question Again, Prof. E. D. Cope. ... 4817 

Cornell University, Professor Boyesen at. Theodore Stanton 4812 

Crazy Story, A. Hudor Genone 5097 

Criticism, Stationariness of. George Jacob Holyoake 4903 

Death, The Ceasing by, and the Ceasing by Life. C. Arnold F. Lindorrae 4831 

Dharmapala, the Buddhist. Anna Ballard 5173 

Dharmapala's, H., Mission 5071 

Dishonesty, The, of the Coinage Law of 1878. Edward C. Hegeler 5104 

Distinctiveness. The, Made Further Evident.— Self-Defensive for the 
People.— Rejected Tenets Replaced by Better. George Jacob Holy- 
oake 4978 

Dunes of the Baltic, On the. L. Lindemann-Kussner 5087 

Duty, The, of the Hour. Edward C. Hegeler 5103 

Earth-Animal. The.— An Hypothesis. W. D. Lighthall 4877 

Eating, The Spiritual Significance of. From the Buddhist Point of View. 

Keijiro Nakaniuva 4991 

England and Amerina. By Moncure D. Conway 4815 

Ethical Method of Controversy, The.— Its Discrimination. George Jacob 

Holyoake 4994 

Ethnology, The Influence of, on the Study of the Veda. Prof. H. Olden- 
berg 4889 

European Opinions on the Second Parliament of Religions 4807 

Fables From the New ^sop : The Great Kite Syndicate, 4861.— The Po- 
tentate's Present, 4868. Hudor Genone. 

Fighting Fire. Dr. Felix L. Oswald 4887 

Four Brahman Pandits Anxious to Avoid Death. Translated from the 

Chinese by D. Hayashi 5046 

Free Thought, The First Stage of : Its Nature and Limitation, 4880 ; The 
Second Stage of: Enterprise, 4890; The Third Stage of: Secularism, 
4922. George Jacob Holyoake. 

"French Revolution, The, Illustrated by Mirabeau's Career," H. von 

Hoist on. G. Koerner 4823 

Gilman Mr., One of the Venezuelan Commission, and the Monroe Doc-^ 

trine. G. Koerner ^4801 

Godhead, The Holy Spirit, the Female of the. Francis Jay 4770 

Gruet, Jacques, Calvin's Ethical Victim. Moncure D. Conway 5055, 5068 

Heart of Oak, The, Books. T. J. McCormack 5132 

Hoist, H.von, on "The French Revolution Illustrated by Mirabeau's Ca- 
reer." G. Koerner 4823 

Holy Spirit, The, the Female of the Godhead. Francis Jay 4770 

Hour, the Duty of the. Edward C. Hegeler 5103 

Humanity of the Stones, The. Abel Andrew 5135 


Identity of Religious Thought in Greece and India. Prof. H. Oldenberg 5034 

Immortality, Reversionary. George M. McCrie 4904 

Intelligence, Open Thought the First Step to. George Jacob Holyoake.. 4871 
Investigation, Conquests of. George Jacob Holyoake 4899 

Jefiferson, Thomas, and Religion. E. P. Powell 4943 

Jesuit Mission, The, in China. Translated from the Japanese by Keijiro 

Nakamura 5021 

Jesus, The Resurrection of. Atherton Blight 4811 

Law of 1878, The Dishonesty of the Coinage. Edward C. Hegeler 5104 

Life Eternal. Dr. Woods Hutchinson 4855 

Literary Correspondence. Amos Waters 4797 

Literature in America. Moncure D. Conway 4971 

Luther, Martin. The Reformer.— The Spirit of the Age.— The TrafBc in 
Indulgences, 5063 ; Luther the Monk.— The Rupture with the Church. 
—The Conflict.— Battles Within and Battles Without, 5072 ; Accept- 
ing the Summons.— The Diet of Worms, 50S2 ; The Hero of the Na- 
tion, 5095 : The Outlaw of the Wartburg. — A Contemi>orary's Descrip- 
tion of Luther, 5111 ; Problems and Tasks, 5121 ; Political and Social 
Complications. — Luther's Marriage. — Luther's Private Life, 5127 ; A 
Letter of Luther to the Prince-Elector of Saxony, 5149; Struggles 
With the Devil, 5154; The Tragic Element in Luther's Life, 5r59. 
Gustav Freytag. 

Massey, Gerald. Amos Waters 4789 

Millionaire, The Right to be a. F. M. Holland 5052 

Monism, The, of Autocosm. The Late Dr. Robert Lewins 47G3 

Monroe Doctrine, The, in 1895. Prof. E. D. Cope 4777 

Monroe Doctrine, A Symposium on the.— The View of a Canadian, W. D. 
Lighthall, 4794.— Thomas Jefferson's Letter to Mr. Rush (With Com- 
ments). E. P. Powell, 4795 —The Memorial of the Representatives of 
the Religious Society of Friends, 4796.— A Letter from a Subscriber, 
C. H. Reeve, 4796. — Dean Craik's Opinion, 4796. — From an Octogen- 
arian. M. G. White, 4796. — Remarks from Ex-Governor Koerner, 4796. 
Monroe Doctrine, Mr. Gilman, One of the Venezuelan Commission and 

the. G. Koerner 4801 

Morality Independent of Theology. Ethical Certitude. George Jacob 

Holyoake 4984 

Moscow after the Coronation. Prof. James Mark Baldwin 5023 

MOIler, Prof. Max, on Christianity and Buddhism 5071 

Mythology, Comparative. Prof. H. Oldenberg 4881 

Nirvana, The Doctrine of. Shaku Soyen 5167 

Open Thought the First Step to Intelligence. George Jacob Holyoake. . 4871 

Our Cleveland Christmas. Moncure D. Conway 4775 

Outposts of a New Science. Hudor Genone 4914 

Paine's "Age of Reason," The Centenary of. Moncure D. Conway 4759 

Past, The, and the Perennial St. Patrick. Moncure D. Conway 4839 

Patriotism, Christianity and. Count Leo Tol.stoi. 

4967, 4975, 4983, 4993, 4999, 5007 
" Patriotism and International Brotherhood," President T. B. Angell on. 5013 

Philosophic Religious Thought, The Rise of. Prol. H. Oldenberg 4937 

Philosophic Socialism. Hudor Genone 4767 

Photography, The New X-Rays in. Professor Rdntgen's Discovery. 

Thomas J. McCormack 4799 

Pilgrimage, A, to Beethoven. Richard Wagner 5031,5043, 5048 

Politics as an Applied Art. Hudor Genone 5105 

Religion of Science, The, Refuted. Dr. William Brenton Greene, Jr. . . 5015 

Religion, The, of the Veda. Prof. H. Oldenberg 4872 

Religious Thought, Identity of, in Greece and India, 5034; Types of, in 
Ancient Greece and India, 5003. Prof. H. Oldenberg. 

Remonetisation, The, of Silver. A Petition. Edward C. Hegeler 4935 

Republicanism, What Is ? Prof. Calvin Thomas 4863 

Republicanism, What Is? Prof. E. D. Cope 4897 

Resurrection, The, of Jesus. Atherton Blight 4811 

Reversionary Immortality. George M. McCrie 4904 

"Rich, Woe to the." F. M, Holland 5039 

Right, The, to be a Millionaire. F.M.Holland 5052 

Roentgen' s Rays Again. Thomas J. McCormack 4843 

Rosmini : Catholic Philosopher. Ellis Thurtell 4912 

Science, The Religion of. Refuted. Dr. William Brenton Greene, Jr 5015 

Second Parliament of Religions, European Opinions on the 4807 

THE OPEN COURT.— Index to Volume X. 



Secularism, Creates New Responsibilities. George Jacob Holyoake .... 5000 

Secularism. How, was Diffused. George Jacob Holyoake 4959 

Secularist Ceremonies. George Jacob Holyoake 5088 

Self and Eternal. Charles Johnston 4847 

Self-Extending Principles. George Jacob Holyoake 5041 

Sense, A Lost. S. Millington Miller 4817 

Silver, The Remonetisation of. A Petition. Edward C. Hegeler 4935 

St. Patrick, The Past and the Perennial. Moncure D.Conway 4839 

Stationariness of Criticism. George Jacob Holyoake 4903 

Stones, The Humanity of. Abel Andrew 5135 

Taylor, Thomas, the Platonist. Amos Waters 4908 

Three Principles Vindicated. George Jacob Holyoake 4927 

Through Opposition to Recognition. George Jacob Holyoake 5036 

Trinity, The Dogma of the. The Rev. George I. Low 4791 

Types of Religious Thought in Ancient Greece and India. Prof. H. 01- 

denberg 5003 


United States, The Doom of the. T. J. McCormack 5094 

Upanisbads, The, and the Brahmans. Charles Johnston 5079 

Veda, The Gods of the. Prof. H. Oldenberg 4919 

Veda, The Influence of Ethnology on the Study of the. Prof. H. Olden- 
berg 4889 

Veda, The Religion of the. Prof. H. Oldenberg 4872 

Vedic Religion, The History of the. Prof. H. Oldenberg 4895 

Venezuelan Question Again, Mr. Conway on the. Prof. E. D. Cope 4817 

White Room, The. Voltairine De Cleyre 4945 

Why Chambord was Not Made King of France. Theodore Stanton 5143 

"Woe to the Rich." F. M.Holland 5039 

X-Ravs, The New, in Photography. Professor Roentgen's Discovery. 

T. J. McCormack 4799 


Abhidharma, The, Outlined 5107 

Abolition of Witch-Prosecution 4946 

Anti-Christian, Not 4936 

Augsburg, The Angel of 490i 

Barrows, Dr., in Paris 49" 

Belief in Witchcraft 4883 

Brahmanism and Buddhism, or the Religion of Postulates and the Reli- 
gion of Facts 4851 

Buddha-Gaya Case, The 4957 

Buddhism, Charles Gutzlaff on, 4820; and the Religion of Science, 4844 ; 
Brahmanism and, or the Religion of Postulates and the Religion of 
Facts, 4851; in Its Contrast with Christianity, as Viewed by Sir Mo- 
nier-Monier Williams, 4783. 

Buddhist, Goethe a 4832 

Buddhist Tract, A 5057 

Buddhistic Sentiments, Christian and 4828 

Catholicity, The, of the Religion of Science 4793 

Chandra Das Brothers, The 4997 

Chauvinism, Patriotism and 5012 

Christian and Buddhistic Sentiments 4828 

Christian Demonology, The Influence of Ancient Greece Upon, 4S67 ; 

Northern Contributions to, 4867. 
Christianity, Buddhism in Its Contrast with, as Viewed by Sir Monier- 

Monier Williams 4783 

Coinage Law of 1878, The Dishonesty of the. Edward C. Hegeler 5104 

Current Topics 5054 

Demonology of the Nineteenth Century 4988 

Devil-Conception, The, in Protestant Countries 4930 

Devil Stories and Devil Contracts 4961 

Dharmapala's, H., Mission 5071 

Dishonesty, The, of the Coinage Law of 1878. Edward C. Hegeler 5104 

Dogma, The, of the Trinity 4771 

Duty, The, of the Hour. Edward C. Hegeler 5103 

Election, The 5118 

European Opinions on the Second Parliament of Religions 4807 

Events of To-day 4804 

Gissac, F. de. Obituary 5125 

God, the Responsibility of 4803 

Goethe a Buddhist 4832 

Gutzlaff, Charles, on Buddhism 4820 

Holyoake' s, Mr. G. J. Secularism 5092 

Hour, The Duty of the. Edward C. Hegeler 5103 

1 Change. In Reply to Mrs. Hopper's Question, Ca 
r Christianity ? 

Judson, Mr. H. D., Railroad Ethics of. 
Koerner, Gustav. In Memoriam 



■ 4764 

■ 5025 

■ 4879 

Lao-tsze's Tao-Teh-King.— The Author of the Tao-Teh-King.— La 

Philosophy, 5136; Lao-tsze's Ethics, 5146; Taoism, 5155. 
Law of 187S, The Dishonesty of the Coinage. Edward C. Hegele 

Liberal Congress, The 

Liberty of Conscience in Prussia 

Miracles, Witchcraft and 

Missionary Problem, The 

Monroe Doctrine, The Significance of the 

New Discoveries, How They Affect the World 

Nirvana. A Story of Buddhist Psychology .5151, 5160, 

Northern Contributions to Christian Demonology 




t of Religioi 
>ns on, 4807. 

s. The Origin of the, 4973; The Second, Europea 

The Devil-Concepti 

;ience 1 



Politics, Present Issr 
Presbyterian, In Rep 
Protestant Countries, 
Prussia, Liberty of C 

Railroad Ethics, The. of Mr. H. D. Judson 

Reformation, Witch-Prosecution after the . 

Religion of Science. The Catholicity of the, 4793 ; Buddhism ant 
4844 ; Witchcraft and the 4923. 

Religion, Universal, and Special Religion 

Remonetisation, The, of Silver. A Petition. Edward C. Hegeler. 

Responsibility, The, of God 


Secularism. ^ 
Silver, the Remoneti 




J. J Holyoake's 

Advantages of 

f. A Petition. Edward C. Hegelei 

Trinity, the Dogma of the 

Universal Religion and Special Religion 

md the Religion of Science, 4923; 

Witchcraft, Belief in, < 

acles. 4955. 
Witch-Prosecution, 4892 ; Abolition of, 4946 ; After the Reformation, 4941 



Anti-Christian. (With Editorial Remarks ) George Warren 5030 

Are We Responsible for Our Fate? (With Editorial Remarks.) John 

Maddock 4869 

Buddha Picture, The. John Willoughby 5157 

Can There Be a New Christianity ? Mrs. Geo. H. Hopper 4766 

Dancing Procession, The, of Echternach. Dr. N. M. Palgen 5101 

"Doitcher's" Puritanism, The. (With Editorial Comment.) J.Nelson 

Trask 4790 

Doom of the United States, The. F. de Gissac 51 10 

Free Coinage of Nickel. Nicolaus Fiat 5110 

Happiness and Ethics. (With Editorial Note.) A. L. Jerold 5139 

"Holy Spirit, The, the Female of the Godhead." R. F. Johonnot 4798 

In Defense of Himself. Jacques St. CSre 5166 

Maddock, Mr. John, on Free Will 5100 

Monroe Doctrine, The. I. A. Lant.— E. P. Powell.— T. W 4821 

No Resurrection— No Christianity. (With Editorial Comment.) J. W. 

Gaskine 4829 

"Old Shoemaker, The." (With Editorial Note.) J. W. Gaskine 4773 

"Our Cleveland Christmas." F. M. Holland 4806 

" Responsibility of God, The." (With Editorial Comment.) John Mad- 
dock— A. Lincoln Shute, 4828; John Maddock and W. I. Fletcher, 

Story of Adam, The. (With Editorial Note.) J.R.Barnes 4773 

THE OPEN COURT.— Index to Volume X. 



A Marble Year. Viroe 5109 

Amrita. Charles Alva Lane 4806 

Beala Vita. Charles Alva Lane 4902 

Deathless. Robert M. Harper 4838 

From Goethe's Wilhelm Meister 4885 

Make the Tempest Serve. Viroe 4846 


Non-Existence. Charles Sloan Reid 4958 

Reconciliation. F. Bonney 5157 

Sonnet to Death. Mary Morgan (Gowan Lea) 4966 

The New Poet. J. Arthur Edgerlon 4926 

The Song of the Pessimist. George Rainstord Talboys 5062 

The Treasure Digger. From Goethe. Translated by E. F. L. Gauss ... 4885 

The Unknown God. Wilhelmine Darrow 4790 

'Tis Not. Mattie McCaslin 4918 


American Teachers for India 

Andrew, Abel. The Humanity of Stone: 

Annual Literary Index for 1895 

Ashitzu Zitsuzen. Life of Orgino Doku 
Astrophysical Journal. The 

Bell, Alexander Melville. English Visible Speech in Twelve Lessons.. 5141 

Bergen, Fanny D. Current Superstitions 5101 

Blair, Thomas S. Human Progress 5101 

Bonney, Fanny. Reconciliation 5158 

Brinton, Daniel G. View of History 5038 

Brinton, Daniel G. The Myths of the New Woild 5142 

Brodbeck, Adolf. Ideal of Universiiies 5142 

Brooklyn Ethical Association 5126 

Buddhist Picture, A 5141 

Buddhists and Christians, Meeting of, in Japan 5158 

Cantor, Georg. Conlribuzione al fondaments dellaTeoria degli insiemi 

transliniti 5006 

Carneri, B. Sechs Gesange aus Dante's Gttttlicher KomOdie 4790 

Charbonnel, Abbe, on Dr. Uarrows : 4918 

Chili, Two Open Letters from 5141 

Congress of the Free Thought Federation 5078 

Crew, Henry, and O H. Basquin. On the Spectrum of Carbon, and On 

the Magnesium Band at \5007 4998 

Curtis, MattooD Monroe. An Outline of Philosophy in America 5038 

De Brisay, C. T. Latin Mastered in Six Weeks 4950 

Dharmapala, H. Arrival in America 5070 

Dictionary of Philosophy and Psychology 4926 

Dresser, Horatio W. The Perfect Whole, an Essay on the Conduct and 

Meaning of Life 5158 

Gladden, Washington. Ruling Ideas of the Present Age 5086 

Goldsbrough, Giles F. Some Prolegomena 10 a Philosophy of Medicine. 5141 

Gould, George M. Borderland Studies 5134 

Guyau. Irreligion of the Future 4790 

Halsted, George Bruce. Criterion for Two-Term Prismoidal Formulas ; 

The Culture Given by Science 5038 

Hansei Zasski 5141 

Holyoake, George Jacob. English Seculariim. . 4878 

Jackman, Wilbur. S. Nature Study and Related Subjects for Common 

Schools 5 1 10 

James, William. Is Life Worth Living ? 5141 

Kantsiudien , 4822 

Kiernan, James G. On Carlyle 4814 

Kinderfehlir, Die 4998 

Klein Felix. The Arithmetisation of Mathematics 5006 

Kohaus, Hannah More. Soul Fragrance 4774 

Kuessner, L. Lindemann. On the Dunes of the Baltic 5094 

.... 5141 

Liberal Congress of Religions 

Loeb. Jacques. Ueber den Nachweis von Contrasterscheinungen im Ge- 
biete der Raumempfindungen des Auges, and the Limits of Divisibil- 
ity of Living Matter 

Loyson, Hyacinlhe. France et Alg^rie ; Christianisme et Islamisme 



Mach, Ernst. Popular Scientific Lectures 

Monist, The 

Montgomery Edmund. Molecular Theories of Organic Reproduction. 

Mother Nature's Children 

Moulton, Richard G. The Modern Reader's Bible 

Musaeus School and Orphanage 


Translation of The Gospel of Buddha 

Ohara, Kakichi. C 
Old South Leaflets 

Open Court, The, Changed to a Monthly 

Outlook, The, and The Gospel of Buddha 

Papus. Premiers Elements de Chiromancie 

Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology. 

Philosophical Portrait Series 

Physieal Review. I he 

Picavet, F. Abelard et Alexandre de Hales 

Prang, Louis, & Co. Easter Greetings, 4862.— Chrismas Calendars 

Romanes, G. J. Examination of Weismannism 

Sanghamitta Girl's School 

Scribner' s Magazine 

Sears, Lorenzo. The History of Oratory from the Age of Pericles to the 
Present Time 

Siam Ceded to France and England 

Smythe, William E. Colonial Lectures 

Stead. W.T. Masterpiece Library 

Stokes. Alfred, C. Aquatic Microscopy for Beginners or Common Ob- 
jects from the Ponds and Ditches 

Stryker, M. Woolsey. The Letter of James the Just 

Terrestrial Magnetism 

Tolstoi, Count Leo. Christianity and Patriotism 



I Dyke, Henry. Respor 
Arranged Under Subje 

ve Readings : Selected from the Bible 

i for Common Worship 

aYoga .... 


le. Juan Enrique, of Santiago, Open Letters from . . , 
, Joseph. Critical Periods in the History of the Ea 

Walking on the Water. A Jataka Story 

Ward, Lester F. The Nomenclature Question in Botany ; The Data of 

Sociology; Sociology and Psychology 5038 

Warfield. B. B. Augustine and the Pelagian Controversy 5054 

Warren, Henry Clarke. Buddhism in Translations 4950 

Washington's Address to the Churches 4862 

Webb, Mohammed Alexander Russell. The Armenian Troubles and 

Where the Responsibility Lies 4998 

Weismann, August. Germinal Section 4886 

While, George Rantoul. An Elemeiitarv Chemistry 5102 

Wood, Henry. Studies in the Thought-World, or Practical Mind Art. . . 5142 

The Open Court. 



No. 436. (Vol. X.— I.) 


Copyright bv The Open Court Publishing Co. — Reprints are permitted only on condition of giving full credit to Author and Publisher. 



In the opening year 1793, when revolutionary 
France had beheaded its king, its wrath next turned 
upon the King of kings, by whose grace every despot 
claimed to reign. But eventualities had brought 
among them a great Quaker heart — Thomas Paine. 
He had pleaded with the revolutionists for the king's 
life, thereby incurring the stroke of their bloodshot 
eye. And when the king was slain, he set himself to 
deal with their rising fury against the King of kings. 
His entreaty for Louis XVI. had been " Kill the king, 
but spart; ^..t. .nan, ' and uo w he pleaded, ' ' Disbelieve 
in the King of kings, but do not confuse with that 
idol the all loving Heart of the universe." To Paine 
Atheism appeared the overthrow of a universal Father- 
hood on which rested universal Brotherhood. On 
this theme he had written from time to time during 
many years, and immediately after the execution of 
the king (January 21, 1793) he gathered up his ma- 
terials and gave them to a fellow-deputy, Lanthenas, 
to translate into French. This earliest Age of Reason 
was printed in French in March, 1793, about the time 
when the priesthood was finally overthrown in France. 
It was just at the high tide of insurrection against the 
entire Past, but the worst element of the Past was 
still so active that a man was as likely to lose his life 
for a theoretical variation in his anti-theological doc- 
trine as formerly for a slip in Athanasian metaphys- 
ics. Lanthenas at once submitted his translation of 
the Age of Reason to the powerful Robespierrian, Cou- 
thon, who was offended by it, possibly because Paine 
had a fling at the " Goddess of Nature." The orthodox 
who have denounced the Age of Reason are in succes- 
sion to Couthon, as cruel a murderer as ever lived. 
Couthon's frown suppressed the book, and Paine states 
that his life was endangered. " I endangered my life 
in the first place by opposing in the Convention the 
executing of the king, . . . and endangered it a second 
time by opposing atheism." 

But Paine did not accept Couthon's verdict on his 
book. He got back his manuscripts, and waited for 
a calmer moment when he could prepare a more per- 
fect book. The Terror, however, waxed in fury. On 
October 31, 1793, the Girondins were executed, and 

their American comrade, Paine, was warned that he 
would soon share their fate. Thereupon he set him- 
self to gather in some literary form his manuscripts 
on religion, and worked on them until the night after 
Christmas. He had not completed it six hours when, 
at three in the morning, he was arrested in his house. 
No. 63 Faubourg St. Denis. On his way to prison 
he managed to deposit his Age of Reason with Joel 
Barlow. It was printed by Barrois at the English 
Press in Paris, and at once published in London, Phil- 
adelphia, and New York. 

Ten long months Paine was thus immured, hear- 
ing nothing of his book, or of the controversy it had 
excited. His old friend James Monroe, afterwards 
President, having arrived as Minister in Paris, secured 
Paine's release, November 4, 1794. He found Paine 
more dead than alive, from cold and semi starvation, 
which had 'Drought on a terrible abscess in his side. 
Mr. and Mrs. Monroe took him to their own house, 
and tenderly nursed him, but there was little prospect 
that he could recover. The abscess continued the 
cruelty of his gaolers ; though in the house of kind- 
ness, he was still a prisoner, facing death. The in- 
valid then first read the replies to his Age of Reason, 
and in Monroe's house he wrote the really epoch-mak- 
ing work — Part Second of the Age of Reason. This 
first appeared in London on October 24, 1795, a fact 
that recalls Milton's saying that when God has any 
new revelation to make he first reveals it to " His Eng- 
lishmen." But Providence seems to employ doubtful 
agents. While Paine was carrying his book through 
the English Press in Paris, some rogue stole some un- 
revised proofs, and copied parts of his manuscript, 
and disposed of these to a London publisher, W. D. 
Symonds. On seeing the advertisement Paine wrote 
to a London printer : 

"Sir, — I have seen advertised in the London pa- 
pers the second edition [part] of the Age of Reason, 
printed, the advertisement says, from the Author's 
Manuscript, and entered at Stationers Hall. I have 
never sent any manuscript to any person. It is there- 
fore a forgery to say it is printed from the author's 
Manuscript ; and I suppose is done to give the Pub- 
lisher a pretence of Copy Right, which he has no 
title to. 



" I send you a printed copy, which is the only one 
I have sent to London. I wish you to make a cheap 
edition of it. I know not by what means any copy 
has got over to London. If any person has made a 
manuscript copy I can have no doubt but it is full of 
errors. I wish you would talk to Mr. [ ? Symonds] 
upon this subject, as I wish to know by what means 
this trick has been played, and from whom the pub- 
lisher has got possession of any copy. 

"Paris, December 4, 1795. T. Paine." 

The cheap edition (one shilling) appeared, Jan- 
uary I, 1796, published by D. I. Eaton, who described 
himself as "printer to the supreme majesty of the 
People." Poor Paine had fewest of those " Rights of 
Man " which he proclaimed. His iron bridge patent 
was disregarded after his outlawry for the Rights of 
Man (1792) by the bridge across the Wear (while he 
was in prison in Paris, and was unable to make any 
reclamation of his stolen literary property). Symonds's 
edition distributed its errors through England and 
America. Fortunately few of the clerical errors affect 
the sense. The worst are in the Preface, where in- 
stead of " 1793 " the misleading date " 1790" is given 
as the year at whose close Paine completed Part First, 
— an error that spread far and wide, and was fastened 
on by his calumniator in America (Cheatham) to prove 
Paine's inconsistency. In the same Preface occurs 
this sentence : " The intolerant spirit of religious per- 
secution had transferred itself into politics ; the tribu- 
nals, styled Revolutionary, supplied the place of the 
Inquisition ; and the Guillotine of the State outdid 
the Fire and Faggot of the Church." The rogue who 
copied this little knew the care with which Paine 
weighed words, and that he would never call persecu- 
tion "religious," nor connect the guillotine with the 
"State," nor concede that with all its horrors it had 
outdone the history of fire and faggot. What Paine 
wrote was : "The intolerant spirit of church persecu- 
tion had transferred itself into politics ; the tribunals, 
styled Revolutionary, supplied the place of an Inqui- 
sition ; and the Guillotine of the Stake." 

Since the publication of my Life of Paine I have 
made an interesting discovery concerning the Age of 
Reason, which I have not yet published. I stated in 
that biography that although the work as we now have 
it was written in the last months of 1793, and finished 
within six hours of his arrest (December 27), he had 
written in the beginning of the year a work of the 
same title, which was translated into French by Lan- 
thenas, but suppressed because it gave offence to Cou- 
thon. I have sought in vain, in the National Library 
at Paris and elsewhere, for this early translation ; but 
it struck me lately that the translation by Lanthenas 
dated 1794, Le Si'ecle de la Raison, might be simply 
his original translation with a new title-page. This 

led me to compare the latter with the English work, 
with the result that my guess is fully corroborated. Sev- 
eral of Paine's paragraphs, footnotes, and sentences 
are unknown to Lanthenas ; and on the other hand 
in the hurry of writing at the close of the year, with 
the guillotine blade suspended over him, Paine omitted 
several sentences and clauses which his readers will 
be glad to find recovered in my forthcoming edition. 
I may say for those not familiar with Lanthenas's 
translations that he was too much of a literalist to in- 
terpolate anything. I will now give several of the 
more interesting restorations which I have been able 
to make by the help of Lanthenas's French transla- 
tion, placing in brackets the altered or additional 
words : 

" Every national church or religion has established 
itself by pretending some special mission from God 
communicated to certain individuals. The Jews have 
their Moses, the Christians their Jesus Christ . . . the 
Turks their Mahomet ; [as if it were not of the very 
essence of the ways of God to be equally open to all 

"As to the theology that is now studied it is the 
study of human opinions and of human fancies con- 
cerning [the Supreme Intelligence]. ... It is not the 
least of the mischiefs that the Christian system has 
done to the world that it has abandoned the original 
and beautiful system of [natural] theology, like a 
beautiful innocent, to distress and reproach, for the 
hag superstition." 

"The solitary idea of a solitary world, rolling or 
at rest in the immense ocean of space, gives place to 
the cheerful idea of a society of worlds [whose very 
movement is the first awakening and first instruction 
of reason in man.] 

" Every principal art has science for its parent, 
though the person who mechanically performs the 
work does not always, and indeed but very seldom, 
perceive the connexion ; [and although owing to the 
ignorance which modern governments have diffused, 
it may to-day be very rare that such persons even give 
a thought to such things]. 

" He (Jesus) preached most excellent morality, and 
the equality of man ; but he preached also against the 
corruptions and avarice of the Jewish priests. . . . The 
accusation which those priests brought against him 
was that of sedition and conspiracy against the Roman 
government, . . . neither is it [impossible] that Jesus 
Christ had in contemplation the delivery of the Jewish 
nation from the bondage of the Romans. Between 
the two, however, [was taken the life of this virtuous 
reformer and revolutionist, too little imitated, too 
much forgotten, too much misunderstood]." 

Perhaps Couthon was angered by these last words 
of Paine's tribute to Jesus, — " trop peu imit6, trop 



oubli^, trop m^connu." No equal tribute to the hu- 
man Jesus can be found in any orthodox, theological, 
or religious English or American book of the last cen- 

It was considered a sort of sin to "know Christ 
after the flesh." Early in the last century Dean Swift 
remarked that considering that their religion v^as based 
on the union of divinity and humanity, it was wonder- 
ful how little of either there was in it. Of thought 
there was little in the pulpit till Paine's book waked 
it up. In looking over old files of the London Morning 
Chronicle I observed along with the first advertise- 
ments of the Age of Reason an advertisement to the 
clergy that G. Kearsley, 46 Fleet Street, had for sale 
a good stock of manuscript sermons in a "legible 

Before leaving the French translation I may men- 
tion that, unlike our English version, it is divided into 
chapters, whose headings I translate : "The Author's 
Profession of Faith "; " Of Missions and Revelations "; 
" Concerning the Character of Jesus Christ, and His 
History"; " Of the Bases of Christianity"; "Exam- 
ination in Detail of the Preceding Bases"; "Of the 
True Theology"; "Examination of the Old Testa- 
ment"; "In What the True Revelation Consists"; 
"Concerning God, and the Lights Cast on His Exis- 
tence by the Old Testament "; " The Effects of Chris- 
tianity on Education, with Proposed Reforms"; "Com- 
parison of Christianity with the Religious Ideas In- 
spired by Nature"; "Advantages of the Existence of 
Many Worlds in each Solar System "; "Application 
of the Premises to the System of the Christians"; 
"Of the Means Employed in all Time, and Almost 
Universally, to Deceive the People"; "Recapitula- 

The English version contains, however, several 
paragraphs and sentences not in the French book. 
Instead of Addison's version of the 19th Psalm, " The 
spacious firmament, etc.," Lanthenas has substituted 
a poetical version of the same Psalm by Jean Baptiste 

* * 

Among the large number of replies to Paine's Age 
0/ Reason, — thirty-six works are catalogued in the 
British Museum, but there are many it does not pos- 
sess, — not one, so far as I have observed, has noted a 
very remarkable omission in Part I. So eager and 
hungry were the theologians to get at the heretic that 
they appear to have passed by a statement of the sci- 
entist, which they might plausibly have fixed on as a 
proof of ignorance. In Paine's astronomic episode, 
wherein he anticipates Herschel's theory of the fixed 
stars, he nevertheless entirely ignores Herschel's dis- 
covery of a seventh planet. In Paine's enumeration 
of the planets, they are still six, and the names are 

given. When the book was published, Uranus had 
been more than twelve years discovered. Astronomy 
was Paine's favorite science ; he had studied it under 
Ferguson ; and it is not for a moment to be supposed 
that he had not joined in the universal applause of 
Herschel's discovery. The omission of any reference 
to the new planet plainly shows that the astronomic 
parts of the Age 0/ Reason (Part I.) were printed from 
manuscripts written before the year 1781. Had it 
been possible for the prisoner to revise his proofs, the 
omission would no doubt have been corrected, but it 
is now an erratum that adds meaning to his prefatory 
words : "It had long been my intention to publish my 
thoughts upon religion, but I had originally reserved 
it to a later period of life, intending it to be the last 
work I should undertake." The omission of Uranus 
is a witness that Paine had been working out his reli- 
gion during the American Revolution, just as he had 
been working out steam-navigation, — a practicable 
method of which he had invented years before the first 
steamer was launched by Fitch, who attests Paine's 

Paine's theism is indeed traceable to a period long 
anterior to the American War. Had it been generally 
realised that his mind was not sceptical, but eminently 
constructive, historians might have found in his re- 
marks concerning the Quakers, in the earlier part of 
the last century, among whom he was educated, very 
instructive testimony as to their views, which were 
much the same as those of the American "Hicksites. " 
A remarkable confirmation of Paine's witness concern- 
ing the early Quakers has recently come from an un- 
expected quarter — Russia. A sect there, "theDukho- 
bortsy, " is in collision with the government, and 
Tolstoi has sent to the London Times (October 23) an 
account of the sect, which sprang up in the last cen- 
tury : 

"The first seeds of the teaching called ' Dukho- 
borcheskaya' were sown by a foreigner, a Quaker, who 
came to Russia. The fundamental idea of his Quaker 
teaching was that in the soul of man dwells God him- 
self, and that He himself guides men by His inner 
word. God lives in nature physically and in man's 
soul spiritually. To Christ, as to an historical per- 
sonage, the Dukhobortsy do not ascribe great impor- 
tance. . . . Christ was God's son, but only in the sense 
in which we call ourselves ' sons of God. ' The purpose 
of Christ's sufferings was no other than to show us an 
example of suffering for truth. The Quakers, who in 
1818 visited the Dukhobortsy, could not agree with 
them upon these religious subjects ; and when they 
heard from them their opinion about Jesus Christ 
(that he was a man) exclaimed, ' Darkness! '. . . ' From 
the Old and New Testaments,' they say, 'we take only 
what is useful,' mostly the moral teaching. . . . The 



moral ideas of the Dukhobortsy are the following : All 
men are, by nature, equal ; external distinctions, what- 
ever they may be, are worth nothing. . . . Amongst 
themselves they hold subordination, and much more, 
a monarchical government, to be contrary to their 

Here is an early Hicksite Quakerism carried, ap- 
parently from England, to Russia long before the birth 
of Elias Hicks, who recovered it from Paine, to whom 
the American Quakers refused burial. Although Paine 
arraigned the union of Church and State, the principle 
of that union was based on a conception of equality 
based on the divine sonship of every man. This faith 
underlay equally his burden against claims to divine 
partiality by a "chosen people," a priesthood, a 
"monarch by the grace of God," or an aristocracy. 
Paine's " reason " is only an expansion of the Quaker's 
" inner light "; and the greater impression, compared 
with previous republican and deistic writings, made 
by his Rights of Man and Age of Reason (really vol- 
umes of one work) on the century that has followed, 
can only be explained by the apostolic fervor which 
makes him a spiritual successor of such men as George 
Fox and John Wesley. 

The evidence afforded by Paine's omission of Ura- 
nus among the planets that a large portion of Part I. 
was written in early life, led me to compare it closely 
with Part H. There are indications of much progress. 
The deism of Part I. is substantially Newtonian, 
though invested with a fervor unknown to the earlier 
deism. God is the Supreme Intelligence ; he is dis- 
played in the visible universe ; and his highest gift to 
man is reason, — by which, as Kepler said, man thinks 
God's thoughts after Him. But in the second part, 
the whole written in 1795, theism rests on a new basis. 
He finds God revealed "in the works of the creation, 
and by that repugnance we feel in ourselves to bad 
actions, and disposition to do good ones." 

It is interesting to compare with this Kant's famous 
aphorism: "Two things fill my spirit with ever new 
and increasing wonder and reverence the more often 
and fixedly thought contemplates them, — the starry 
heavens above me and moral law within me." The 
Critique of the Practical Reason, in which Kant's sen- 
tence appears, was printed in 1788, seven years be- 
fore the sentence of Paine. But Kant was an un- 
known and untranslated man when Paine wrote, and 
it is an impressive fact that to these two devout men, 
in the solitude, the ethical basis of theism was almost 
simultaneously reflected in the universal order. 

In Paine this new theism marks the turning point 
of freethought from the old a priori method of earlier 
deism. Edmund Randolph, first Attorney-General of 
the United States, ascribed the tremendous impres- 
sion made by Paine's pamphlets during the American 

Revolution, to his unexampled power of carrying with 
him both educated and uneducated. His Age of Rea- 
son, which he insisted on bringing out in a cheap form, 
was taken very seriously by the most learned men of 
his time. Priestly, Wakefield, Watson (Bishop of 
Llandaff), etc. But its cheapness, leading to a vast 
circulation, brought on its prosecution : it was made 
the flag under which a thirty years' war for freedom of 
the press was fought by humble people ; and although 
these won the victory, and the book could not be sup- 
pressed among them, it was in a sense suppressed 
among scholars, — scholarship being a sort of aristo- 
cratic privilege. This is why we now find such wri- 
ters as Lecky, Leslie Stephen, and Huxley ignoring 
Paine. There is still an impression that he was merely 
a very able but rather ignorant member of the work- 
ing class. Paine was, on the contrary, a learned man. 
He studied astronomy with Ferguson, mathematics 
with Martin, physics with Bevis and Franklin ; he 
was a founder of the Philosophical Society in Phila- 
delphia ; and the University of Pennsylvania, under 
influence of the ablest scholars in America, conferred 
on him the degree of Master of Arts. 

The memory of Huxley is dear to me, but it is im- 
possible to pass by his casual comment on the eigh- 
teenth century freethinkers that " there is rarely much 
to be said for their work as an example of a grave in- 
vestigation," and that they shared with their adver- 
saries "to the full the fatal weakness of a priori phi- 
losophising." Huxlej' does not name or mean Paine, 
of whom he plainly knew nothing. Had he read the 
Age of Reason he would have realised that it was Paine 
who turned from the a priori method and really founded 
the Huxlej'an school. He took up the late Professor's 
method ; he refused to say that a miracle is impossi- 
ble ; he went through the Bible and judged each al- 
leged miracle critically on its own merits, to an extent 
sufficient to estimate the value of the books. Huxley 
has unconsciously repeated Paine's rules of evidence, 
his arguments concerning the resurrection of Christ, 
and other points. In the Age of Reason may also be 
found the theory of a "Christian Mythology" after- 
wards worked out by Bauer and Strauss, and the first 
attempt to recover a human Jesus after the method of 

It was indeed this inauguration of the critical and 
historical method which caused all the warfare over 
Paine's book. The clergy were compelled to go into 
the contradictions of the Bible, and make such con- 
cessions as to the additions, interpolations, and acci- 
dents that had befallen the book said to be written by 
the Holy Ghost, that infallibility was punctured, and 
the Age of Reason let in to decide what was and what 
was not the word of God. It was these concessions 
which inaugurated the Broad Chufch. That ration- 



alistic wing, as well as Hicksite Quakerism, are mon- 
uments of Paine's Age of Reason. Prosecutions began 
soon after its publication, and many poor booksellers 
were imprisoned for years, and their families ruined. 
And during all that time the only pulpit from which a 
protest was uttered was that which the present writer 
has the honor to occupy, — South Place Chapel. The 
brave preacher was William Johnston Fox, then (1819) 
a believer in supernatural Christianity. But now his 
humble successor lives to witness not only a Paine 
Exhibition such as we are preparing at South Place, 
but such a celebration of this centenary as that of the 
conservative leader in the House of Commons (Bal- 
four) who has declared in his Foitndations of Belief 
(along with many superficial things) that Christian 
believers in "inspiration" have no right to deny the 
same to the great Oriental teachers. The Centenary 
was also celebrated, to the very month, in the Church 
Congress at Norwich, October 10, when Professor 
Bonney, F. R. S., Canon of Manchester, read a paper 
in which he said : 

" I cannot deny that the increase of scientific 
knowledge has deprived parts of the earlier books of 
the Bible of the historical value which was generally 
attributed to them by our forefathers. The story of 
creation in the Book of Genesis, unless we play fast 
and loose either with words or with science, cannot be 
brought into harmony with what we have learnt from 
geology. Its ethnological statements are imperfect, 
if not sometimes inaccurate. The stories of the Fall, 
of the Flood, and of the Tower of Babel, are incredi- 
ble in their present form. Some historical element 
may underlie many of the traditions in the first eleven 
chapters of that book, but this we cannot hope to re- 
cover. . . . The Gospels are not, so far as we know, 
strictly contemporaneous records, so we must admit 
the possibilities of variations and even inaccuracies in 
details being introduced by oral tradition." 

This was said to an exceptionally conservative con- 
gress of the English Church. Every statement in it 
is in Paine's Age of Reason, and that the Canon was 
not taken to prison for publishing Paine's book, may 
be ascribed to the political and religious leaven min- 
gled by Paine with the constitutional and theological 
meal of this nation, and its steady working through a 
hundred years. 

Fanatics portrayed Paine as dying in agonies of 
remorse for writing the Age of Reason ; but every sen- 
tence in it which excited their wrath was written in 
the presence of hourly expected death. It was Paine's 
solemn bequest to mankind, for whose welfare his life 
was a martyrdom. The world can never have another 
Paine. History does not repeat its apostles. They 
sum up a past, but the spirit the}' individually derive 
from it is an evolutionary force, and develops a larger 

life in which their own testimony is absorbed. Should 
another religious apostle arise he (or she) will be far 
removed from Paine's gospel in form, but deep within 
that leader will be the transmitted blood and passion 
which wrote the most religious book written in the 
last century — The Age of Reason. 


(Posthumous Article.) 

Corpus sanum = Mens Sitna. 

Permit me to attempt a plain going exposition of 
the above named system of monistic materialism in 
the pages of The Open Court — an organ of public 
opinion, which, spite of our radical difference on this 
vital point, I regard as almost unique in its candor 
and zeal for truth. I regretfully say radical difference 
as our objective is so divergent ; mine being to eradi- 
cate religion altogether from the blinded minds of 
vain man, as he has hitherto provisionally postured 
on earth — that of The Open Court, and I presume The 
Monist, though not so conspicuously posted up in the 
latter, to bolster up what I must from my scientific and 
neological, up to date platform term this hereditary 
disease — Goethe's ewige Krankheit — by these agencies, 
which to me, as to Napoleon on the occasion of the 
Concordat, seems what vaccination is to Variola. For 
the stamping out of bovine pleuropneumonia there 
seems no remedy but the slaughter of the infected 
victims. But for what I must call the dire contagion 
of religion — of the adoration of a Supreme Omnipo- 
tence, manifesting Himself as the "Author of Nature," 
with all its cruelties and designed torture chambers 
which, as Epictetus inter alios states, surpass all those 
of the most malignant earthly tyrants — science and 
reason provide a less drastic remedy. I say designed 
tortures, since the whole sj'Stem of sentient existence, 
as we can now see more clearly than any former gen- 
eration of the sons of men from our recent more com- 
prehensive grasp of Nature's imperfections in the 
domain of biology, seems to show that the watchword 
of the latter is not only "Devil take the hindmost" 
but "Devil take all but the foremost," which is the 
real interpretation of the leading principle — the "sur- 
vival of the fittest " — in modern, to say nothing of an- 
cient, evolutionary natural science. 

Alfonso the Wise of Castile is credited with saying 
that, if the Ptolemaic astronomy was correct, he him- 
self could have given "God Almighty" hints which 
would have manifestly been for the better. But of 
animated nature this reproach still stands intact. In- 
deed, in my youth, I have often heard reflecting clini- 
cists, not particularl}- gifted with thinking-power, re- 
echoing, quite as a matter of fact, the arraignment of 
the "wise," but practically unsuccessful Spanish 



ruler, who like that "wonder of the world," the Em- 
peror Frederick of Germany, patron, if not author, of 
the irreligious work De Tribus Ivipostoribus, if such a 
work exists, viz., Moses, Christ, and Mohammed, was 
not distinguished, but the reverse, for wise or pru- 
dent policy in practical public affairs. And how 
simple and apodictic the panacea for this inverted 
and perverted rule of life ! Banish from theory and 
practice the arrogant claim of what Balzac terms la 
recherche de V Absolu, fall back, or rather forward, on 
relativism, and the Sphinx-enigma is solved. Each 
man who does this, i. e., realises the "volte face," is 
"converted " from a Darius into an QSdipus, and to 
him the "painful riddle of the universe " is no longer 
a mystery. He then sees that behind or under every 
larva or mask only his own features are present. "Ge- 
filhl ist Alles," as even Dr. Johnson allowed of free 
will when he said: "We feel we are free and that's 
enough " — not that we do so feel when out of gear 
(health). Then we feel bound, like Prometheus, to 
the iron pillars of necessitj', but that only connotes the 
fact that perfect corporeal sanity, including of course 
that of the sensorium, and not the glorification of an 
"if existent," unreachable God, or nature, is man's 
" chief end," or be all and end all. Hygiene, i. e., 
supreme culture of mind and body, becomes thus the 
surrogate of provisional and obsolete religion. 

The Calvinist poet, Cowper, holds that the " un- 
devout astronomer is mad." La Place, and his French 
colleagues in ideal physics, were of exactly the oppo- 
site opinion, as the former great geometer curtly ex- 
pressed to Napoleon by the formula : "I have no need 
of that [viz., a divine] supposition." This view does 
for physiology what La Place did for astronomy, what 
Lavoisier did for chemistry by his antiphlogistic the- 
ory, which first constituted a quantitative science and 
fully changed it from alchemy. What animistic dual- 
ism terms the "soul," which is only Anglo-Saxon for 
life — as pneuma, psyche, and ghost is for gas — repre- 
sents in physiology what phlogiston does in chemistry 
— a mischievous heresy to which no one in past ages 
clung more childishly than Dr. Priestly himself, the 
discoverer of oxygen gas, named by him dephlogisti- 
cated air, opposing thus the antiphlogistic theory of 
combustion and calcination, which, as above stated, 
changed alchemy into chemistry with results which 
were so brilliant and immediate. A like effect would 
be sure to follow the abolition of God, the "soul," or 
" spirit" in the domain of biology. Then reason, the 
judge even of revelation, as Bishop Butler states, 
would have free verge and play with results I feel lan- 
guage too weak to express as regards their benignant 
action on our as yet derelict race. 

Civilisation is but spurious, and social and politi- 
cal institutions unstable, while society and authority, 

as amply demonstrated by history, and never more 
than in our ownyf« de Steele age, persist in effete men- 
tal anachronisms. 

Make self God, or vice versa, and the day and all 
days are our own. We lose nothing, and gain every- 
thing, by the exchange. As immortality, like every 
thing and every nothing else, is only a. feeling, infinity 
becomes even a more vivid sensal reality than before. 
The "rising from the dead," which, I presume, even 
Dr. Carus holds to be the most grotesque of night- 
mares, is of course impossible. But the sense of it, 
which is its true essence, still continues to exist in 
every pulse-beat ; time and eternity, space and im- 
mensity, being one and the same. Between them no 
real solution of continuity is logically conceivable. 


In Reply to Mrs. Hopper's Question, Can There Be a New Christianity ? 

This world of ours is a world of changes, but the 
transformation that is taking place proceeds by de- 
grees, and we are sometimes at a loss to know whether 
or not we can retain the same name for a thing that 
has become radically new. 

The character of a man may change, and yet he re- 
tains the consciousness of his identity, and is regarded 
as the same person. The change of personalities 
rarely, if ever, implies a change of name. The same 
is true of ideas, of philosophies, of moral aspirations, 
of religions. 

Thus, Platonism finds its expression in the books 
of Plato. Nevertheless, we had, when new problems 
arose, a new formulation of Platonism which is com- 
monly called Neo-Platonism ; and as to the Platonism 
of Plato, he may have changed his views after writing 
his Dialogues. We know that he burned all the books 
which he had written before he had become acquainted 
with the philosophy of Socrates. Thus Plato de- 
stroyed the old Platonism and replaced it by a Pla- 
tonic Socratism. 

Kant's writings show traces of his mental evolution, 
and Professor Windelband of Strassburg, one of the 
best -known Kant- investigators, distinguishes four 
phases of Kantism in which we find a decided change 
of front. Who, then, is the real Kant in Kant's own 
books, and what is genuine Kantism ? 

After Kant's death his criticism soon gave way to 
Hegelianism, officially protected as a kind of Prussian 
State-philosophy; but v/hen the natural sciences over- 
threw the card houses of the various o; //wr/ construc- 
tionists, German philosophers resumed the study of 
Kant, and created a movement which is commonly 
called the Neo-Kantian school. Neo- Kantianism, how- 
ever, is no longer pure Kantism : it is a new phase 



of Kantism, which Kant himself would have been 
obliged to adopt on finding changed conditions and 
new requirements. 

The Darwinian theory was formulated by Darwin, 
but when after Darwin's death new issues arose, Dar- 
winism was restated, and we now distinguish between 
the Darwinism of Darwin and the Neo-Darwinism of 
some of his followers. 

The Mohammedanism of to-day is different from 
that taught by Mohammed, and the Christianity of to- 
day is even more different from the teachings of Jesus 
of Nazareth. Nevertheless, both retain their names, 
as much as a learned professor, with all his titles and 
honorary degrees, retains the name which, as a tiny 
baby, he received from his parents soon after his 

By Christianity we understand, not so much the 
doctrines of Jesus Christ, as the whole movement that 
was created through the aspirations of his life. 

Christ's Christianity consisted in his devoting him- 
self entirely to the mission of preaching that the king- 
dom of heaven was near at hand ; and the kingdom of 
heaven, according to his utterances preserved in the 
synoptic gospels, was a kind of communistic society, 
the members of which gave up all self-assertion and 
surrendered their property, together with worldly pur- 
suits, leading a life of perfect chastity and self-abne- 
gation. The first Christian congregation at Jerusalem 
preserved these traits of Christ's ethics, but when 
Christianity was transferred to Greece, the ideal of 
brotherly love was retained, while the socialistic prin- 
ciples, which were found to be impracticable, were 
abandoned, and the spirit only of Christ's movement 
was retained. With every new conquest Christianity 
developed new features and entered upon a new phase 
of its evolution. Thus, the development of Christianity 
among various and widely distant nations involved a 
differentiation leading to schisms. Roman Christianity 
differed considerably from Greek Christianity, and still 
more from the religion of the Christian Copts and 

When Christianity spread over the North of Europe, 
it became Teutonised, and the Christianity of our 
churches contains more ingredients from our Saxon an- 
cestors than most Christians of to-day are aware of. 

The Christianity of the United States shows dis- 
tinctive features which are absent in Europe but are 
so prominent and apparent that they are noticeable 
even in Roman Catholics. The Roman Catholics of 
Europe are different from the native Roman Catholics 
in the United States ; and it is probable in this age of 
rapid exchange of thought and mutual intercourse that 
American Christianity will considerably affect Euro- 
pean Christianity. 

The Christianity of the Armenians still preserves 

many features which have long been abandoned by 
both European and American Christians. 

The Christianity of the Saxon races, the North 
Germans, the Dutch, the English, and their kin, pre- 
serves the combative nature of their pagan ancestors. 
Luther is a character in whom the impulse that came 
down to him from the carpenter's son of Galilee is 
strangely combined with the war-spirit of Beowulf and 
the liberty-loving spirit of Arminius. 

If we invented new words for every change that 
took place in an evolution of an idea, we should have 
to invent new words constantly, and our dictionaries 
would swell to an enormous size. Experience has 
taught us to preserve the identity of a name, even 
where radical changes have taken place, if only the 
historical connexion be preserved. 

And there is a good reason for it ! Ideas are not 
nonentities. They are not mere sounds. They are 
living impulses as much capable of growth, adaptation, 
and transformation as are plants and animals. They 
have been embodied in words which are preserved in 
books, and are exemplified in moral conduct which im- 
presses and influences the growing generation. Ideas 
are spiritual organisms, and as such they are subject 
to the same laws of growth and change as all organisms. 

As to the final destiny of religions, it is apparent 
that religions, by following the injunction of accepting 
the truth without compromise, whatever the truth may 
be, must ultimately come to one and the same conclu- 
sion. Every religious progress must be an approach 
towards the common ideal of all religions which will 
be a religion based upon the laws of existence trace- 
able in the psychical, social, and physical facts of ex- 

Rituals and symbols (nay, even names) may vary 
according to taste, historical tradition, and opinion ; 
but the essence of religion can only be one and must 
remain one and the same among all nations, in all 
climes, and under all conditions. p. c. 


We read in the Ne^v-Chiirch Messenger the followiDg commu- 
nication, a Christian's reply to an unjust accusation of Buddhist 
morality : 

' ' Editor of the Messenger : — Under this heading the Mes- 
senger of October i5, 1895, prints the following article: 

"'Recent and more careful inquiry into the teachings of 
' Buddhist books and the life in Buddhist Pansales, or monasteries, 
'reveals much that seems very evil in the spiritual light of the 
' Scriptures. It is said the Viniya Pittika was partly translated, but 
' English publishers would not print it for fear of prosecution for 
' disseminating obscene literature. Broad and liberal views are 
' proper up to a certain extent, but they must not be spread out 
' thin enough to whitewash one of the most iniquitous systems of 
' belief in the world in spite of certain beautiful and highly moral 
' passages, which, like pearls in a sewer, are found in its literature.' 

"... .When this ' recent and more careful inquiry ' was made, 



is to me a mystery, for I have read every recent -work on the sub- 
ject, and there is nothing in the character of the Buddhist popula- 
tions from Japan to Ceylon to justify such cruel charges, for they 
are uniformly described by travellers as honest, chaste, truthful, 
gentle, generous, and temperate, That there are evils connected 
with the monastic system is doubtless true, and it may be that the 
informant of the writer was justified by something he may have 
seen in some Buddhist monastery, but Father Hue, who travelled 
more extensively than any one else ever has in Buddhist countries 
and spent much of his time in monasteries, found no such state of 

"As to the Viniya Pittika — there are a large number of books 
under this name, all purporting to give the life and teachings of 
Buddha, with illustrations and explanations, and all substantially 
agreeing as to the life and teachings, but differing widely in the 
explanations ; but among them all there is but one book under 
this name that will justify the statements in this article, and that 
is one which the Dipavamsa, a connected history of Ceylon for 
twenty-three hundred years, says was the production of a hereti- 
cal sect, which, as this history declares, ' proclaimed a doctrine 
against the faith' and 'comprised other sutras and another vi- 
niya"; of which Professor Beale says : ' The sections illustrating 
the Paragika and other rules are of a gross and offensive charac- 
ter.' This with other facts convinced that distinguished scholar 
that this account of its origin was correct. 

" It would be as just to quote the book of Mormon as giving 
the moral tendency of the teachings of Christianity as to quote 
this heretical production written many hundred years after the 
death of Buddha as showing the moral tendency of his teachings. 
But aside from all this, it is a practical denial of the paternal care 
of the Father of us all to claim that He has for twenty-five hun- 
dred years left the great majority of his common children to grope 
their way with no light to guide them but the fitful phosphores- 
cence from a great moral sewer, and no faith to cheer them, but 
' the most iniquitous system of belief in this world.' 

"But what are some of the pearls in this moral sewer ? 

"First, the great doctrine of the universal brotherhood of 
man, which swept from all Buddhist countries both caste and 
slavery with all their attendant cruelties and horrors. Thus the 
commandments : 

" 'Thou shall not kill. 

" ' Thou shalt not steal, 

" 'Thou shah not lie. 

" 'Thou shalt not commit adultery. 

" 'Thou shalt not taste any intoxicating drink.' 

" But to me more remarkable than all these rules of life to 
regulate the outward conduct is the fact that the most fundamen- 
tal and constantly enforced of Buddha's teachings was that love is 
the only power to regenerate man. That we must overcome evil 
with good, and hatred by love, was not only taught and practiced 
by him, but was illustrated and enforced by some of the most 
beautiful discourses that ever fell from human lips. 

" I will close this article by what I regard as another pearl in 
the teachings of Buddha which I give in my own language, and 
would especially commend to all New Churchmen as not only 
obedience to the great law of charity, but as teaching the highest 
possible, practical wisdom to those who are desirous for the spread 
of the heavenly doctrines. 

*' Revere your own, revile no brother's faith. 
The light you see is from Nirvana's sun. 
Whose rising splendors promise pel feet day. 
The feeble rays that light your brother's path 
Are from the self-same sun, by falsehoods hid 
The lingering shadows of the passing night. 

Henry T. Niles. 



To the Editor of The Open Court : 

I wish to ask a few questions which have been suggested to 
me by your article in The Open Court of December 12, entitled 
" The Doctrine of Resurrection and Its Significance in the New 
Christianity." What is the definition of the word Christianity ? 
One in authority defines it as "The religion of Christians ; the 
system of doctrines and precepts taught by Christ." Now what I 
wish to know is : how can any one, consistently, use the term 
"New Christianity"? If the men who lived at the time of Christ, 
and those who were, a little later, taught by his Apostles, were not 
able to formulate a creed or record, accurately, what Jesus taught, 
is it consistent to suppose that after two thousand years men can 
do so ? For surely there are no better intellects to-day than were 
possessed by the Anti-Nicene Fathers. 

If one does not believe nor practice what is taught by the re- 
ligion of the Christians, by what right can he consistently call him- 
self a Christian ? 

If the light shed around by scientific research makes Chris- 
tian views untenable, what right have thinkers to reconstruct their 
religion, throwing out what they choose, and keeping what they 
wish, and then call their belief the " New Christianity "? Why 
not reconstruct Mohammedanism by striking out its inconsisten- 
cies, and what we call its immoralities, and then call it the New 
Mohammedanism ? 

It would be composed of practically the same precepts and 
teachings as the New Christianity. 

The quotation which you give of the close of Rev. Haweis's 
article would lead one to infer that the Christ ideal was a false 
one, and that helps to prove that the ideal was of human concep- 
tion and therefore faulty. Would not the separation of the ideal 
Christ from the real Jesus be a better solution of the question ? 

Would any religion that had received a name on account of its 
distinctive features be able, " with all reverence towards the past," 
to "accept the truth without compromise, whatever the truth may 

Such a religion would be a different religion from that defined 
by the word Christianity, and would demand a new name if those 
holding it wished to be consistent. If you think I have any reason 
for asking these questions I would be pleased to receive answers. 

Racine, Wis. Mrs. Geo. H. Hopper. 




E. C. HEGELER, Publisher. 



$1.00 PER YEAR. $0.50 FOR SIX MONTHS. 


SON." MoNCURE D. Conway 4759 


Lewins 4763 

IDENTITY IN CHANGE In Reply to Mrs. Hopper's 

Question, Can There Be a New Christianity ? Editor. 4764 

"BUDDHIST MORALITY. " Henry T. Niles 4765 


Can There Be a New Christianity ? Mrs. Geo. H. 
Hopper 4766 

The Open Court. 



No. 437. (Vol. X.— 2.) 


Copyright by The Open Court Publishing Co. — Reprints are permitted only on condition of giving full credit to author and publishe 



The adage, "to give a dog a bad name," has no 
better application than can be found in the abused, 
vilified, and misunderstood word, "Socialism." The 
avowed Socialists are to a very large extent men of 
small means and less influence. They are mostly men 
usually occupied with bread-winning in those arduous 
vocations which leave little time for the luxury of deep 
learning. They are — many of them — bright, "brainy" 
men, but men of few and narrow ideas, one-sided, 
men of segments, not circles, to their intellectual de- 

They are mostly good talkers, rather than practical 
doers, generally "infidels," rather than followers of 
any creed or religion, and, to a great extent, foreign 

All these inhibitions have had their natural ten- 
dency to discredit their testimony to the advantages 
that are claimed for co-operation as a substitute for 
competition, and to the great mass of respectable, law- 
abiding, practical citizens socialism is regarded as 
nothing but a new and noisome economic cult, now 
dreamy,. but liable, perhaps, if encouraged, to prove 

The socialist and the anarchist have been ranked 
together, and among almost all are regarded as alike 
visionary and as alike disturbers of the peace. 

Curious as it may seem, socialism and anarchy 
represent exactly opposite poles of thought ; they are 
as widely divergent in their theories of economics as 
the agnostic and Puritan are in the region of religion. 
Anarchy means individualism, — absolute nihilism of 
law; socialism means the dominancy of law, — the 
sinking of self in business (as now in government) in 
the State. 

The average man of business has little time to 
chase to their lairs the countless rapacious ideas which 
steal up unawares, and seem to him nothing but vexa- 
tious marauders, anxious only to filch some of his sub- 

This sober, sensible, average man of business has 
probably read Mr. Bellamy's book, and his notions on 
the subject are a vague compound of chimerical pic- 
tures, in which underground chambers figure, and 

credit-cards, and restaurants, where Chinese, negroes, 
and Hottentots dine on terms of social equality with 
perhaps himself as waiter. 

Now socialism may continue to be, as it now is, 
rejected of men; but to be despised of them it ought 
not to be, since in theory it contains, not only possibly 
the germ of a nobler and better civilisation, but cer- 
tainly that vitality in affairs whose principles have 
evolved our present great advancement. 

As an animal, man is essentially social; his first 
condition was patriarchal, then tribal; in both com- 
munistic. The institution of private interests was a 
sport upon the flower of evolution, which survived be- 
cause selfishness made it fittest to survive ; and now, 
after the lapse of centuries of custom, these private 
interests have expanded into what we call vested 

The.p!rogress of civilisation tended more and more 
to emphasise this principle of selfish individualism. 
The beneficent religion of Jesus, at first bringing 
about a revival of the early communism, essentially 
altruistic, yet in a few centuries became debased by 
the dominance of an ecclesiastical system as rigid as 
the Pharisaic Judaism it supplanted. 

The selfish principle of single individual soul-sav- 
ing, contrary as it is to the pure and perfect Christian 
Gospel, naturally aided and comforted its companion 
system of single individual goods saving, till these 
two companion evil spirits culminated in the middle 
ages in a debauched and degraded Church and in the 
countless castles of robber-barons blotting the fair face 
of Europe. 

Well might these be called "Dark Ages," when 
nothing but might made right, and the population of 
the world was divided into two great classes — slaves 
and freebooters. 

How slowly the people grew towards emancipation 
history's painful pages tell. Gradually the spurious 
assumption of divine right in kings has become vested, 
more or less, in the people. Arduously religion has 
become purer and purer, and through many vicissi- 
tudes the condition of labor has been ameliorated. 
Freedom in these several lines has gone on since the 
days of Magna Charta and the mendicant friars, broad- 
ening down from precedent to precedent, but always. 



increment after increment, the vested privileges of 
the few have given way to the eternal rights of the 

Wherever a number perform a service for all which 
might be performed by each for himself, the service 
becomes social in its nature. Wherever a community 
agrees to delegate any power to its government not 
strictly limited to the preservation of peace and order 
to the extent of its delegated functions, that govern- 
ment becomes socialistic. 

Examples of the simpler sorts of socialism are 
found primarily in the natural family and in communi- 
ties in sparsely settled districts, where all unite for the 
individual weal in "bees," house-raising, and log- 
rolling. A firm is socialistic, a corporation much more 
evidently so, and in all the various departments of 
government, wherever a departure is made from the 
necessary powers which sustain order there is a phase 
of socialism, whether in this country it be federal, 
state, or municipal. 

In the national administration several departments 
are of this character: the Post-Office, the Patent-Of- 
fice, and the Department of Agriculture are radical 
departures from the prime purpose of government ; 
they are business institutions conducted for the bene- 
fit of the entire people, and by the duly qualified rep- 
resentatives of the people. 

It was only after the spirit of free principles had 
thoroughly permeated the populace that these innova- 
tions began to take shape. Since the day that the 
village blacksmith Wat Tyler stood before King Rich- 
ard on London heath, leading his motley crowd of 
villeins "against the Lord's anointed, because his 
ministers had made him odious, " from time to time 
the rabble have risen with always one battle-cry upon 
their lips — equality. 

To him who has mastered the philosophy of his- 
tory, and who understands the nature of mankind, 
equality for the human race must always appear what 
it really is — the baseless fabric of a dream. 

Equality is not equity, and it has been only the 
ignorance of the masses that ever believed a process 
of levelling to be practicable. And yet, little by little, 
the functions of government have become enlarged, 
growing continually with the growth of freedom. 

There are those who denounce socialism who are 
yet themselves recipients of governmental assistance 
to which custom has so reconciled them that they fail 
to perceive the source, and, drifting with the current, 
become themselves partakers of motion till they have 
lost the sense of motion. 

The social agitator is one who seems never to lose 
the sense of motion ; he is all action, — nerves, mus- 
cles, all the energies of both body and brain ever in 
a state of vigorous oscillation. His eyes are keen as 

a hawk's to see iniquity, and his imagination alert as 
a romancer to detect the remedy. The individual 
ought not to be obliged to do what the State can do 
better. Let the individual do what he can do for him- 
self better than the State can do for him. On these 
two theories hang all the ideas and wishes of the rad- 
ical socialist. 

Difficulties have no terrors for him, and from his 
lexicon has been erased the word impracticable. It 
is one thing to approve of collectivism as a philosoph- 
ical principle to be wrought out patiently generation 
after generation, and quite another to be a radical 
collectivist and shriek co-operation continually and 

In this city of New York we have an example of 
the beneficence that flows from an enlightened en- 
largement of the privilege and power of the munici- 
pality. The Croton water, led into the city by huge 
aqueducts and ramifying everywhere to innumerable 
faucets and hydrants, serves, as perhaps no other 
single artificial influence does, to conserve the public 
health, and to each individual's needs adds comfort, 
and to comfort luxury. 

Yet the Croton water is a socialistic function of the 
city government. It was established only after years 
of arduous effort, and against the most strenuous op- 
position. Many, many years ago a few far-seeing cap- 
italists, actuated perhaps as much by philanthropy as 
self-interests, sought to give their native city the ben- 
efit of an adequate supply of pure water. The former 
system of pumps and wells had become grossly un- 
fitted for use in the crowded sections, and the remedy 
was sought in a system of conduits. It was, I believe, 
the Bronx river in Westchester county which was con- 
templated as the source of supply. For this work of 
utility — a great one in that day — a charter was the 
first requisite, and this Aaron Burr, then an attorney 
in New York, procured from the legislature. 

With that acumen for which this celebrated man 
is noted there was incorporated in the charter a simple 
financial provision by which the company organised 
under it was enabled to do a general banking busi- 
ness. At this day the water-works corporation is still 
in existence. Any one who chooses can supply him- 
self with fresh water from its pump, but this is kept 
solely to comply with its charter, for it now exists as 
a great financial institution — the Manhattan bank on 
Wall street. 

There are those, seeing the inestimable benefits 
flowing from a community of effort for the common 
weal, who believe that the principle of governmental 
control, so successfully applied in the two instances 
we have noted, can be extended till perhaps, not en- 
croaching upon, but rather benefiting individual lib- 



erty, it shall comprehend many if not all of the neces- 
sities of life. 

Some say that it is only a question of degree and 
not of kind; only a question of time, opportunity, and 
development till the same centralisation which now 
gives us a splendid, strong, coherent, and effective 
system for the transportation of various kinds of mail- 
able matter shall be extended so as to include, not 
only letters, printed matter, and small parcels, but all 
sorts and conditions of merchandise, and eventually 
all transportation — express, freight, and passenger. 

Some say that if the sweet waters of the Croton 
can be so readily and cheaply provided for our citi- 
zens, why may not this principle be extended to other 
matters equally essential to mankind. What inherent 
obstacle is there to the provision of light — gas or elec- 
tricit}', of heat for warmth or cooking, of ice, milk, 
meat, vegetables, groceries, dry goods, all the multi- 
tudinous matters that civilised man requires, and which 
could doubtless be provided better, easier, and quicker 
by united than by individual effort ? 

It is, I think, safe to say that there is no inherent 
obstacle. As for the difficulties that must beset pro- 
gress on these lines they are easy to conceive. In the 
past, rightly studied, may be found samples of the fu- 
ture. The magnificent system of the Federal Post 
Office did not spring, like Minerva, fully equipped to 
life. The difficulties confronted by Franklin in this 
country and Rowland Hill in England have not even 
yet been overcome, and it was not more than ten 
years ago in this very city that private enterprise 
yielded to the mandate of the law and ceased to con- 
vey letters for a consideration. 

Was the putting down of these private posts in any 
sense an encroachment upon individual liberty? Not 
at all, but rather an enlargement, since it gave greater 
freedom, ampler opportunity, and better service to that 
enterprise established by the people and for the people. 

The mandate of the law would have been quite in- 
effectual without the greater potency of public opinion. 

Another object lesson the people have before them 
of the efficacy of consolidation : within the last thirty 
years private business methods have seen a complete 
revolution ; the old time slow, plodding ways, by 
which business men, under stress of competition, en- 
gaged in affairs always more or less limited in their 
scope and operations, have given place in large meas- 
ure to an entirely new system whereby a few are en- 
abled to seize, control, and direct vast industries, on 
so great a scale and with so strong a hand as virtually 
to put down all opposition and eradicate to a great 
extent competition in their respective lines of trade. 

It is needless to amplify upon the method by which 
this has been accomplished. The principle of the 
"trust" in all its manifold ramifications is becoming 

daily more and more the potent factor in the world of 

The success of the Standard Oil Company is per- 
haps the best known of all these combinations. There 
a few able, energetic men, directed by the masterly 
intellect of a Rockefeller, gradually united into one 
vast mechanism the many small concerns, till now in 
the production of crude mineral oil, its refinement and 
distribution to the trade, it constitutes one single cor- 
poration, big enough to overshadow and bold enough 
to defy a rival. 

It is not with the moral results of this sort of con- 
centration that we have to deal ; but to point it out as 
an example of the mode of operation by which unity 
takes the place most effectually of variety in action. 

The powers of such a corporation could never have 
stood as they have, practically unimpaired by the law, 
if they had not been employed upon the whole benefi- 
cently. Had not the price of kerosene been so ma- 
terially reduced, as it has been by the Standard peo- 
ple, they would have been legislated out of existence 
long ago. But with an acumen, not the least of the 
brilliant thoughts of these men, they made oil cheap ; 
they called it the light of the people, and the people 
love to have it so. If the principals in this consolida- 
tion made their hundreds of millions, the little con- 
sumer saved his goodly percentage on the gallon. If 
iniquity it was, the people have been willing and active 
coparceners in it. 

Of all the suggestions looking towards municipal 
control of our requirements none has taken more defi- 
nite shape than that which looks to the manufacture 
and distribution of gas by the cities. This has been 
tried in Philadelphia and some other cities, not always 
with the best or even with very good results. And 
yet it is a matter of general notoriety that it might be 
accomplished if popular desire sustained the move- 

In New York it is notorious that the owners of gas 
plants are more effectually intrenched than in any 
other city of the country. In the case of the Consoli- 
dated Gas Light Company alone there is a capital 
stock of about thirty-five millions, worth at present 
market prices over fifty millions. The officers of this 
immense corporation are very shrewd, always alert, 
and rarely unable to carry any point in the legislature. 
Some years ago, in the face of a very active and pro- 
nounced demand, a general disposition to use kero- 
sene (which item brought some of the Brooklyn com- 
panies to the verge of bankruptcy) and the encroach- 
ments of the electric systems, they were compelled to 
reduce the price to $1.25 per thousand cubic feet. 
They struggled against this reduction, claiming that 
it would seriously cripple them. How much they 
were crippled may be observed from their increased 



rate of dividends, and the rise in the price of the stock 
of nearly lOO per cent, in ten years. 

It is believed that the entire gas plant of this com- 
pany, works, holders, mains, service-pipes, and all, 
could be duplicated to-day for a very small fraction of 
its capital, and gas made by the city and delivered to 
consumers at a cost not to exceed twenty-five cents 
per thousand, which would amply sufBce for every 

It is needless to say that the change from corporate 
to municipal control of the gas-works is not imminent. 
There are two many stockholders, and these are too 
rich and too influential ; the political parties are too 
evenly matched, and above all the sentiment of the 
community too staunchly conservative, for any such 
attempt to succeed. The people of the city of New 
York, frightened at the spectre of socialism, will con- 
tinue probably for many years to come to hold tena- 
ciously the old gas companies in their position, and to 
pay roundly when the gas bills come in out of their 
pockets for the privilege of peace. 

It is not the purpose of this paper to delineate or 
even indicate the practical process by which the ex- 
pansive principle now dormant in almost every branch 
of industry shall be awakened. It is enough that the 
principle is demonstrated. It is no part of its pur- 
pose to reply seriatim to the countless objections that 
spring to their feet. That the future civilisation of 
the world must expand, if at all, upon the lines above 
indicated, is but to state a truism as infallible as cause 
and effect, as certain as the calculations of a trajectory 
when the elements of motion are given. Reform has 
always come in just one way: the philosopher has 
thought, the fanatic struggled and raved, and, finally, 
and often through long and sometimes bloody effort, 
the common sense of the people has asserted itself, 
and by their representatives embodying the practical 
genius of an epoch the results have been attained. 

As in the past it came slowly, so it must be in the 
future ; but in civilisation the factor of collectivism 
will continue to increase, and of individual and waste- 
ful competition to decrease, till the daily grind of 
heartless and overburdened existence shall be dis- 
placed by a stable system, essentially mechanical, yet 
freeing men from the thrall of mechanism, leaving 
room and time and an increasing desire for a broader 
and an enduring individual liberty. This is the so- 
cialism of evolution, destined to development as an 
applied art of the science of religion. 



At the outset, I wish to give credit for this thought. 
The idea itself was first received from the Rev. Mr. 
Schultz of Royersford, Pa. Others I know who have 

hinted at it, or have believed in it directly. A pupil 
of the Mount Morris German Baptist Bible School, 
Ogle Co., 111., in an essay on the Holy Spirit, called 
Trinity the "Heavenly Family." The Rev. J. T. 
Myers of Oaks, Pa., I find, has entertained this view 
of the Trinity for years, but does not remember of 
having received it from any human source. While 
these persons are not widely known, yet their views 
show that this idea is not confined to myself alone. 
Although the doctrine itself, the seed-thought, is not 
original with the writer, the following development of 
it is almost, if not entirely, so. 

Let us now turn to revelation to see how this view 
of the Holy Spirit is supported. We do not profess 
to be able fully to treat our subject, but hope to be 
able to awaken thought which may stimulate to fur- 
ther inquiry and lead to fresh discovery. 

Let us first look at Genesis i. , 27. "So God created 
man in his own image, in the image of God created he 
him ; male and female created he them." Mark you, 
the first clause states that man was created in the im- 
age of God, and the second one emphasises this fact. 
The third clause is a striking statement "male and 
female created he them." Man was created in the 
image of God, they were created male and female. 
Now, if there are not male and female in the God- 
head, how could man, created male and female, be 
created in the image of God ? Note how this point is 
also brought out in Genesis v., i, 2. We shall now 
venture another assertion : the full image of the God- 
head was not perfected in humanity until Adam and Eve 
had offspring. Father, Mother, Offspring — God the 
Father, the Holy Spirit, and the Son — constitute the 
eternal nature of God. Our first point then is this : 
Man was created in the image of God ; he was created 
male and female ; hence, there are male and female 
in the Godhead. The place of Father and of Son in 
the act of generation is readily seen ; the place of the 
female alone remains to be filled, and the Holy Spirit 
is the only remaining person to fill it. 

The second reason for ascribing femininity to the 
Holy Spirit is that the Hebrew word, ruah, is femi- 
nine. The office of brooding in Genesis i., 2, is that 
of the female among fowls. She hatched out, as it 
were, the life of the earth, and then, like the old cluck, 
protected it with Her outspread wings. "She was 
the mother of all living." Genesis iii., 20. 

Next, we come to the " rib story." God the Father 
is the one person of the Godhead who is independent 
and who may be said to stand alone ; the existence, 
the origin of the other two persons are ultimately 
traced back to Him. So with humanity, which is 
created in the image of God. Adam was first created 
and was alone. The Spirit is God according to an 
eternal procession. When Adam was without an help- 



meet, "the Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall upon 
Adam, and he slept : and He took one of his ribs, and 
closed up the flesh instead thereof ; and (of) the rib, 
which the Lord God had taken from man, made He 
a woman, and brought her unto the man. And Adam 
said. This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my 
flesh : she shall be called Woman, because she was 
taken out of Man." Genesis ii., 21-23. "For the 
man is not of the woman ; but the woman of the man." 
I Corinthians xi., 8. The "rib story" is, therefore, a 
concrete setting forth of its great antitype in the God- 
head, the eternal procession of the Spirit. The long- 
ing of Adam for a companion is a concrete setting forth 
of a similar longing of the Eternal Father. Eve is a 
type of the Holy Spirit. 

Let us now turn to the New Testament, Luke i., 
35. "And the angel answered and said unto her. The 
Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of 
the Highest shall overshadow thee : therefore also 
that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be 
called the Son of God." First, the Holy Spirit takes 
up Her abode (I use the feminine possessive) in the 
Virgin Mary; then the "power of the Highest," the 
Father, overshadowed her, representing the genera- 
tive act, which the Father eternally performs with His 
Spirit, now, however, the act takes place in the womb 
of the Virgin, that she may give a human nature to the 
Divine Eternal Offspring, consequently that "holy 
thing," which was born of her, was called the Son of 
God. The Holy Spirit did not impregnate the human 
ovum in the Virgin with divine life. Both the Spirit 
and the Virgin were receptive. The first principles 
of life come from the male. The first principles of the 
life of Christ came from the Overshadowing Highest, 
the Father, as He hovered over both the Virgin and 
the Spirit, who now lay in the womb of the Virgin — 
two females, as it were, submitting to the generative 
act, each contributing of her substance to the fertilis- 
ing substance of the Father for the formation of the 
New Being, who has hitherto been the great enigma 
of science and religion. The Spirit's office in bringing 
Christ into the world was that of a female. 

We might draw arguments from the nature of the 
Spirit. She is gentle like a dove. She comforts like 
a mother. She leads the little babe in Christ into all 
truth. She abides ever with the believer. The father 
and the sons wander abroad, but the mother abides 
ever in the home, beautifies it, and keeps it in order. 
So the Saviour says that He will send us the other 
Comforter, the Spirit, who shall abide with us forever 
(John xiv., 16) ; and we may rest assured that the 
Heavenly Mother will instruct us and make us all 
beautiful within. Then still further, the sin against 
the Holy Spirit. A son may go beyond the influence 
of father and brethren and still be reached by mother. 

Among wicked men her influence always lasts the 
longest. Woe unto the man whose heart no longer 
warms at the mention of that name ! Woe unto the 
soul that can no longer be moved by the gentle woo- 
ings of the Holy Spirit ! Such a one is in danger of 
eternal damnation. 

The Bible, nature, and reason, all proclaim that 
there is a female in the Godhead ; and the heart cries 
out for a Heavenly Mother with tenderest longing : 
"Oh, God, my Mother ! " We speak of mother as 
one of the dearest names to mortals given. On earth 
we have a father, brethren, a mother; in heaven we 
have a Father, an Elder Brother ; in that perfect home 
is there lacking a Mother? The heart cries, "No! 
no ! ! no ! ! ! In a perfect home I must have the name 

of MOTHER ! " 


We take pleasure in publishing in the present 
number a short article on "The Holy Spirit, the Fe- 
male of the Godhead," which comes to us, signed 
with a nom de plume, from one of the theological sem- 
inaries of this country and is written by a man who 
is apparently still in the bondage of a literal belief in 
the Christian dogmas. The article commands a pe- 
culiar psychological interest in so far as it reveals to 
us modes of arguments that were used in the days 
gone by, when in the times of early Christianity the va- 
rious dogmas began to assume the rigid forms which 
they now possess. The pseudonym author of the 
article is not aware of the fact that the proposition 
which he makes is not new, but very old. His con- 
ception of the Trinity preceded that other conception 
which is now recognised as the orthodox view ac- 
cepted by all Christian churches and formulated in the 
Athanasian Quicungue. No wonder that the article is 
unacceptable to such Christian publications as have 
not as yet fully freed themselves from Christian pagan- 
ism. Those who have not as yet received the light of 
the new dispensation (which is the faith in a religion 
based upon the eternal laws of existence, such as can 
be found and stated by inquiring into facts with scien- 
tific methods) are naturally unwilling to be confronted 
with instances of atavism, which, however, crop out 
in our religious life as naturally as in the domains of 

How serious our well-meaning author is, can be 
learned from his letter, in which he says of his ar- 
ticle : 

' ' Some five months ago this same article was sent to The Sun- 
day School Times. The thoughts were gleaned, and it was re- 
turned. In like manner it was sent to The Outlook, which was too 
modest to print it. If thoughts lately seen in print were gotten 
from this article, it is a case of literary theft ; if they were original 
with the writer of them, it shows that God is bringing this truth 
to many minds. And this fact is a further proof of the truthful- 



ness of the doctrine. . . . This was written several months ago, 
and the writer has developed the subject much further than it is 
developed here. He would be glad to give these advanced views 
later. He is ready to meet the jeers and scoffs of those who walk 
only in the beaten paths. The expounders of God's word, accord- 
ing to the Lord Jesus, are to bring out new things, as well as to 
review the old, from His treasury." 

We publish this passage on the fate of the manu- 
script at the request of the author/ and did not fail to 
inform him about our own views on the subject, which 
we proposed to publish in a separate article alongside 
of his. 

The doctrine of the trinity of God does not occur 
in the New Testament, and was unknown to the early 
Christians. Nevertheless, it is deeply founded in the 
Greek conception of Christianity which identifies the 
Messiah with the Logos that was in the beginning. 
The Unitarians, like other dissenters from the old 
traditions of the Church, took the letter of the dogma 
seriously, and thus regarded it as either implying a 
tritheism or an irrational proposition which, in contra- 
diction to the multiplication-table, made three equal 
to one. But even so orthodox an authority as Nean- 
der was plain enough on the question. After stating 
that the only passage in the New Testament which 
alludes to the Trinity by speaking of the three that 
bear witness (in i John, 5) is an interpolation, he set 
forth the triple relation in which the world is conceived 
to stand with God, as "its ground, mediator, and 
goal ; or as the Creator, Redeemer, and Sanctifier of 
mankind, which triple relation exhausts the entire 
God-cognition of Christianity. "^ And truly this idea 
that God is, firstly, the eternal condition of existence, 
its law and raison d'etre, secondly, the ever-progres- 
sive evolution and manifestation of the eternal law, 
its living revelation, as it appears in the rationality 
and moral aspiration of thinking beings; and thirdly, 
as the ideal, i. e., the goal to be reached, or the pur- 
pose that rational life sets itself, is so deeply founded 
in the nature of things that other nations, like the Hin- 
dus, developed the same ideas. That the Christian 
Trinity should be a mere imitation of the Brahman 
Trinity is not probable, but we can trace it back to 
Plato, who says : ° 

'0 T^eof apxv^ re kul t£%evti/v Koi fieaa ruv ovtov aivavruv Ix^^- 

"God holds the beginning, the end, and the middle of all 

The doctrine of the Trinity was worked out by the 
Church gradually, and it is natural that several at- 
tempts were made in formulating it, which in the end 
had to be rejected by the sober-minded as conveying 

1 He writes in a postscript : ** If you publish this article, I want you to 
place at the head of it the second paragraph of this leaf." 

2 See Allgetneine Geschichte der christlichen Religion^ Vol. I., i., p. 314. 
SQuoted by Neander ibid, from Plato Lege. IV.. ed. Bip., Vol. VIII., p. 185, 

as an old saying, Tra/lciof /Idyof. 

ideas that would lead to a gross anthropomorphism ; 
and not the least interesting conception of the Trinity 
was that which represents the three in one as God the 
father, God the mother, and God the child. In this 
conception, which appears first in the Old Testament 
Apocrypha, the second person of the Trinity is not 
called the Logos or Word, but the Sophia or Wisdom, 
which latter is a feminine noun in Greek, being in this 
respect comparable to the Sanskrit term vdch^=^ord..^ 
The author of the book, "The Wisdom of Solomon," 
says : 

" I called upon God, and the spirit of wisdom came to me. 

"All good things together came to me with her, and innu- 
merable riches in her hands. 

"And I rejoiced in them all, because wisdom goeth before 
them : and I knew not that she was the mother of them. 

"And being but one, she can do all things : and remaining in 
herself, she maketh all things new : and in all ages entering into 
holy souls, she maketh them friends of God, and prophets. 

" For God loveth none but him that dwelleth with wisdom. 

" In that she is conversant with God, she magnifieth her no- 
bility : yea, the Lord of all things himself loved her ^ 

" For she is privy to the mysteries of the knowledge of God, 
and a lover of his works." 

Among the synoptic Gospels we find that Luke, 
who is more familiar with Greek thought than Mat- 
thew and Mark, personifies the Wisdom of God, and 
speaks of /ler in similar terms to those of the author 
of the Wisdom of Solomon. He says : 

"Therefore also said the wisdom of God, I will send them 
prophets and apostles, and some of them shall slay and persecute : 

"That the blood of all the prophets, which was shed from 
the foundation of the world, may be required of this generation." 

The doctrine of the Father, Mother, and Child 
Trinity of God possesses many beauties which are ab- 
sent in the more abstract conception of the three male 
persons of the deity; and yet it has been rejected by 
the Church. The reason is apparent, and any un- 
biassed reader of the article on "The Holy Spirit, the 
Female of the Godhead " will discover it. If the 
dogma be understood in the letter (as was the fate of 
all dogmas during the period of their crystallisation), 
its absurdity is more apparent than in the other form 
of the trinitarian doctrine, which should not be con- 
ceived as a purely male trinity, but as a trinity in 
which all allusion to sex has been dropped. 

The evolution of science is a slow process, and so 
is the evolution of religion. Religion, such as it is 
taught by many of our religious leaders, is still in the 
mythological stage in which symbols are taken in their 
literal sense, and abstractions are regarded as sub- 
stances or concrete entities. But as astrology con- 
tained the seed of astronomy, and alchemy is a proph- 
ecy of chemistry, so the old dogmatism is a promise 

ton viich (a feminine noun) denoting " AtSyof or word," see Professor R, 
Garbe's article "The Connexion Between Indian and Greek Philosophy," 
The Monist, Vol. IV., No. 2, pp. igi-igz. 



which is sure to find a noble fulfilment in the cosmic 
religion of mankind, based upon the catholicity of 
scientific evidence, which is man's faith in the moral 
import of exact truth. p. c. 



To the Editor of The Open Court: 

In your paper of September 19 is a noticeable article, "The 
Old Shoemaker," by Miss Voltairine de Cleyre. 

It was the descriptive part which first struck me, wonderfully 
realistic, a most striking picture, reminding me of Maupassant. 
But with the description of the old shoemaker the truth ends — 
the real. 

Who is the great Visitor? — Death? "Why could not the 
" frightful old woman " have expected such a One ? On the con- 
trary, she must have expected him every day. 

And what was the dignity of the Unknown ? There is no dig- 
nity in Death ; there is dignity only in Life. 

What Miss de Cleyre calls dignity, is fear, — the old spiritual- 
ism. The old shoemaker looks alive, but is dead. Where has he 
gone? Where will he go? — To "Freedom." Freedom of the 
body; — "the soiled soul loses its dross and commonplace, and 
passes upward smiling to the Transfiguration," 

How does it pass ? If free why does it go to be transfigured? 

How is the crust crumbled to an " impalpable powder " ? The 
body is no powder. It is not even dead ; it is alive, full of the 
activities of innumerable organisms. 

What is the "white, fine, playing flame " which passed up- 
ward ? There was no such thing. There was no passing upward. 
The weight of the old shoemaker's body would hold it down. 

A drunken old shoemaker was dead. There was no dignity 
in it, no freedom in it, no transfiguration in it. As the shoemaker 
was poor and miserable, drunken and quarrelsome, it was a good 
thing for him to die. 

What does the "heart of the long, life long watches of pa- 
tience" mean ? What was the patience, and what was the heart 
of it ? 

What is the ' ' perennial ascension of the great Soul of Man " ? 
What is a soul any how ? 

The fact is such writing has no real meaning, but through 
its vagueness appeals to the love of mysticism in the common 

It helps this out by the use of capitals — "Mighty One" — 
" Stranger" — " Face " — " Visitor." These acting on the imagina- 
tion through their size, have an awing effect upon the ordinary 
mind — simply the effect of a Big Name. 

Such writing aims to obscure the truth and to continue be- 
liefs which are no longer beliefs to intelligent persons, because 
they are incompatible with the observations of real knowledge — 
those beliefs which make the old-time nurse look to see the spirit 
ascend on the last expiration of the dying person. 

Why all this effort in The Open Court to dress up Death in 
cast off clothing, — to make it figure as the passage to Transfigura- 
tion — Freedom — Purity, and so on ? Really it is an admission 
that spiritualism is a necessity to human happiness, even endur- 
ance of life. 

Nonsense. While we live, — we live. Death ends all to us. 
This rubbish about souls passing into Freedom or into the Soul of 
Man is no consolation. 

The consolation in Death is that we are Not. 

We do not regret Life because we do not know Life any more. 
We are done — gone away — blown out like a flame. 

But Life remains. Those who live, — enjoy, hope, strive, 

love, — live. Let the living turn away from the dead as having 
longer personality; turn away to the Living. 

The picture of the " Old Shoemaker " is a vivid piece of writ- 
ing ; it has a dramatic interest ; but no spiritual interest, no mor- 
alising interest ; no pathos, but the pathos of disgusting human 

No transfiguring Visitor in capitals came to him at all ; but 
the same death that comes to every organic being. No transfig- 
uring Visitor — but the police, the commissioner of the poor, the 
Potter's Field, naturally dispose of the body. It is perhaps an 
example of what G. Ferrero calls "Arrested Mentation" when an 
otherwise intelligent writer tries to make out that in such an end- 
ing death brought — Death — an ennobling change to the worn out 
human brute. 

"The soiled soul passes up smiling to the Transfiguration." 
The fact is the smile was probably a relaxation of the muscles at 
the moment he ceased to feel pain, dispelling the habitual scowl 
his features must have worn, as he is said to have " gasped horri- 
bly when he breathed." 

No fine writing can make death an agreeable thing. All of 
us would prefer continuing existence indefinitely if we could. But 
we cannot. Reason then urges us to make an examination of death 
as it is, and to familiarise our minds to it so as not to have it give 
us unnecessary anxiety. We must learn not to shrink from death. 
If dismissing reason, — in other words reality, we choose to believe 
in Transfigurations into the Soul of God, or the Perennial Soul of 
Man, very well. But otherwise, as Dr. D. G. Brinton declares, 
"every one ought to be familiarised with the sight of blood, the 
pangs of disease, and the solemn act of dying. Death and Pain 
should not be concealed ; they are the greatest of all educators, 
for they alone teach us the highest value of Life." 

Live as long as you can. Avoid Death. For there is no 
Transfiguration with a big T after that. And if you go into the 
' ' Perennial Soul of Man, " depend upon it, it will be before Death, 
not after. 

Since writing the enclosed I have read in the same number Miss 
de Cleyre's explanation of her article, and though it extenuates 
her intention to write the old spiritualism, it is otherwise as great 
nonsense as the article itself — what does " the painless life wel- 
comes the animated good " mean ? J. W. Gaskine. 

\The Open Court does not admit that spiritism is a necessity, 
but it advocates the spirituality of man's soul which in spite of 
death is preserved from generation to generation. Death is in itself 
nothing but the ceasing of the life-activities in an organism ; and 
being the close of a life, wiping away much of that which should 
be discarded forever, but often leaving untouched the better part 
of our aspirations, who will deny its pathetic solemnity ? Death 
does not end all to us as Mr. Gaskine declares ; for " man passes 
away" (as goes the Buddhist saying) "according to his deeds, " 
which implies that as a man acted during his life-time so his soul 
will continue as a living and efficient factor in the further devel- 
opment of life upon earth. — Ed.] 


To the Editor of the Open Court: 

Professor or Rev. Mr. Low's view of the story of Adam and 
its relation to the Christian system is rather inaccurate. (See his 
article in No. 433 of The Open Court.) 

In Genesis Adam appears first as an innocent man, though 
not a fool. This was true of Mr. Low once, and of all men, so 
far as we know. 

So far the story fits us all. Genesis shows Adam as meeting 
temptation, his first temptation. Somewhere, at some time, Mr. 
Low and every other man met his first temptation, 

Adam did not resist his first temptation. He yielded to it and 
fell, as did Mr. Low and all men, so far as we know them. 



If Mr. Low denies that he ever yielded to temptation, I will 
gladly make exception in his case. 

Adam yielded. His character after that was different from 
what it was before. He then manifested guilt, shame, fear, and 
dishonesty. The same is true of all men, so far as we know, after 
their fall. The story of Adam outlines the moral history of the 
human race. Man has lost something. Man does need some- 
thing. God, in the Gospel, offers something which man needs. 
I do not mean a "conventional" Gospel, but the Gospel of Christ 
as given in the Bible. 

Begging Mr. Low's pardon, I am respectfully, 

J. R. Barnes, Pastor Cong'l Church, Woodburn, 111. 

[The Rev. J. R. Barnes, in criticising the Rev. Mr. Low's 
view of the story of Adam, replaces his brother's interpretation by 
his own, and appears to believe that his view is the historically 
correct and orthodox conception. The Rev. Mr. Barnes's inter- 
pretation is already adapted to modern views, but it deflects from 
the path of tradition, and the dogmatism of this doctrine has given 
way to a moralising rationalism. It is in this shape unquestion- 
ably more appropriate for church sermons than the old view of 
the story. The Rev. Mr. Low, Rector of St. Paul's Episcopal 
Church of Almonte, Canada, seems to be better informed in the- 
ology than his Congregational brother, the Rev. J. R. Barnes. — 


Soul-Fragrance. By Hannah More Kohaus. Chicago : F. M. 
Harley Publishing Company. Pages, 170. 

An unassuming little book, the cover neatly ornamented but 
print and paper showing signs of crudeness, reminding one of books 
" printed by the author." The little volume contains poems, some 
good, others mediocre. The authoress is especially unhappy where 
she harps on the string of Christian piety. As, for instance, in the 
poem " Ere Long," where she says : 

" You shall see the King in his glory. 
And hear his gentle voice speak ; 
Shall feel his breath on your forehead, 
His kiss of peace on your cheek." 

There are other poems which show decided talent, fervor, and 
broad sympathy, and even philosophical comprehension. For in- 
stance, she is at her best in the poem " Which ? " on pp. 72-73 : 
" I am in love with Love — God-Love, 
And I would fain 
Entwine it in my heart of hearts. 
For righteous gain. 

I am in love with Good — All-Good, 

And I will feed 
My soul upon its substance sure. 

With lavish greed. 

I am in love with Truth — God-Truth ; 

E'en now I feel 
Its potency omnipotent 

All ills to heal. 

I am in love with Light — God-Light, 

And now through me 
It shall reflect the God-derived 

I am in love with mind — God-Mind ; 

In It I see 
The Wisdom, Power, Intelligence, 

That is for me. 

I am in love with Peace — God-Peace ; 

It bathes my soul 
With waters tranquil, pure, and sweet. 

Which makes me whole. 

And I will love ; love more and more. 

Drawing to me 
The all of Love that is contained 

In Deity. 

Then will I permeated be, — 

Dyed with its dye, — 
Until I know not which is Love, 
Or which is I." 
The poem, "I Am," on page 134, is in a similar strain : 
" I am stronger than my fears, 
I am wiser than my years, 
I am gladder than my tears. 
For I am His image. 

I am greater than my pains, 
I am richer than my gains, 
I am purer than my stains. 
For I am His image. 

I am grander than my names, 
I am broader than my claims, 
I am nobler than my aims. 
For I am His image. 

I am better than my deeds, 
I am holier than my creeds, 
I am worthier than my needs, 
For I am His image. 

I am truer than I seem, 
And more gracious than I deem. 
And more real than I dream. 
For I am His image. 

I have naught with death or birth; 
I encompass heaven and earth ; 
Measureless my power and worth, 
For I am His image. 

He whose image thus I bear, 
And whose likeness I shall share. 
All His glory will declare. 

Through the ' I ' — His image." 

These are gems of true poetry, and we hope that they will 
survive in the general struggle for existence that is waged in the 
literary world. C 





DR. PAUL CARUS, Editor. 


$1.00 PER YEAR. $0.50 FOR SIX MONTHS. 



HEAD. Francis Jay 4770 



" The Old Shoemaker," with editorial note. J. W. Gas- 

KiNE 4773 

The Story of Adam, with editorial note. J. R. Barnes 4773 


The Open Court. 



No. 438. (Vol. X.-3.) 


Copyright by The Open Court Pub 

Co. — Reprints are permitted only on condition of giving full credit to autho 



To-day — Christmas Day — England is at peace. 
The choirs are chanting ancient anthems of peace on 
earth, good-will to man, amid hearts calm in the con- 
sciousness that the year now closing has witnessed in- 
creasing efforts of their country to promote peace at 
home and abroad, to relieve suffering within its bor- 
ders, and to stay the hand of cruelty abroad. The 
thunderbolt launched by the President upon this gov- 
ernment, while it was engaged in negotiations with 
Venezuela, has evoked no thunderbolt in reply, nor 
even ruffled the temper of the nation. Americans 
here have been treated with the same kindness that 
has always been extended to them. English credit 
has not been disturbed ; not a failure has occurred ; a 
few speculators may have suffered, but British securi- 
ties have even been enhanced in value. The Presi- 
dent's thunderbolt has fallen on his own subjects — for 
are we not subjects of a man who by a stroke of his 
pen can destroy our resources, break down our credit, 
make our country a laughing-stock, make us hang our 
head with shame ? Our lips are closed, for we cannot 
criticise our sovereign in a foreign land ; but our faces 
can be read ; and we cannot escape the humiliation 
of meeting eyes that silently sympathise with us for 
the disgrace they know we are suffering. 

Our country has chosen out of its sixty millions 
one man to be placed above all other Americans. The 
President is presumablj' the flower of our race, the 
culmination of American wisdom and virtue. Through 
him America has (theoretically) spoken. With what re- 
sult ? Monarchy has been denounced, and every mon- 
arch sits more easily on his throne. There is not one 
among them — neither king, emperor, czar, nor sultan — 
who could dream of exercising half the arbitrary power 
now proved to be lodged in the hands of this Presi- 
dent of a professed republic. Where is the monarch 
whose single word could cost his people a thousand 
million dollars ? In America alone. One hundred and 
three years ago the crowns of Europe formed a league 
to crush the new-born republic of France. They might 
have saved themselves the trouble. A popular super- 
stition of leadership led to the enthronement of per- 
sonal autocrats, — Marat, Robespierre, Napoleon, — 

who out-tyrannised every crowned tyrant, and gave 
the nations object-lessons in the despotism that may 
disguise itself as "republicanism" which strength- 
ened every throne. History is now repeating itself. 
The people of Europe, really republican at heart, are 
now shown that an American president is not only a 
Ko7iig im Frack, as the Germans say, but a potentate 
in whom usurpation is privileged. The President is 
sworn to maintain the Constitution and laws. His 
executive powers are defined and limited by a written 
Constitution. But there is nothing in the Constitu- 
tion, nothing in any law, about the Monroe Doctrine. 
Nay, at this very moment. Congress dare not attempt 
to frame that "Doctrine" in a law, for it would be- 
come a Bedlam of clashing theories and policies. But 
under his technical right to propose measures to Con- 
gress the President enjoys the right to insult other 
countries, to ruin the credit and finances of his coun- 
try, and to promote selfish or partisan ends. This 
privilege of usurpation renders him, even if a well- 
meaning man, an easy tool of corrupt "rings." The 
uneasy feeling which still prevails in the business cen- 
tres of Europe continues because of a suspicion that 
the President has not suspicion enough, and that he 
is being "buncoed" (to use a police phrase) in this 
matter. I remember, just after President Cleveland 
had appointed an unfit man to a high office, asking 
one of his (Cleveland's) political supporters how it 
happened. He answered that a small clique in a cer- 
tain city had " buncoed " the President, who received 
hundreds of letters from all parts of the nation urging 
the appointment of that individual. The letters, posted 
in the different States, were all written by a few per- 
sons in one city. I know not if this be true, but it is 
evidently possible, where great power is entrusted to 
one man, that some clique, for instance, some Vene- 
zuelan or gold-hunting "ring," may from one small 
den of conspiracy have the chieftain overwhelmed 
with jingo letters from all parts of the country, which 
he may be dull enough to regard as expressing public 
feeling. The White House is so morbidly sensitive 
to public opinion that designing letters are considered 
there. A letter written under a feigned name to Presi- 
dent Johnson, — a letter of merest personal spite against 
Motley, while Minister at Vienna, — led to such a pres- 



idential insult to the historian that he resigned his 

Whatever may be the invisible agencies seeking to 
involve us in war, it is certain that no conspiracy of 
crowns against the United States, were such conceiv- 
able, could in many years have damaged us as much 
as our President has in a day. A leading Paris jour- 
nal, influential in the commercial world, says: "It 
must be recognised that the United States is not a 
safe country to deal with." It is an impression that 
has not grown up in a day, though it has received its 
definite stamp and currency in a day. And it will 
outlast the occasion that elicited it : it will last as long 
as the American presidency. 

For some time now our beloved but misgoverned 
country has been unconsciously mounting as if on a 
stage a succession of tableaux which tell more effec- 
tively on the eye of the world than all tall talk about 
free institutions tells on the ear. Let me mention 
some of the contrast between the talk and the facts. 

Representative Govej-nment : exhibited in the equal 
legislative power of small with large populations (e. g., 
Delaware with New York) ; this preservation of the 
rotten borough system, long extinct in England, form- 
ing a non-representative Senate able to impose tariffs 
and money-bills on the people. 

Self-government : the absolute helplessness of all 
branches of the Government to pass any measure 
whatever if a half dozen senators conspire to prevent 
a vote being taken, by talking against time. 

Independence : the sovereign right of a State to ap- 
propriate the property of its citizens and repudiate 
payment, without amenability to any suit, because of 
its sovereign majesty, which can "do no wrong," — an 
irresponsibility unknown in any European State. 

Equality : the helplessness of our national Govern- 
ment to protect its citizens from being disfranchised, 
lynched, or even burnt alive, — a large photograph of 
the late Texas burning being now shown in the cities 
of Europe. 

Separation of Chureli and State: illustrated bj' ex- 
emptions of church property, which increase the taxes 
of all citizens ; also of chaplains salaried in violation 
of the plain letter of the Constitution. 

Religions Liberty: exhibited in the Sabbatarian 
chains of New York and other communities ; and the 
bibliolatry in public schools. 

RepuPlican Institutions: a president insulting a con- 
stitutional monarchy, in which no king or queen has 
for two centuries attempted anything so monarchical 
as the said president's manifesto. 

Such is the "Republic" which European peoples 
have been beholding on the stage of the New World, 
and it is a delusion to suppose that any monarch has 
an interest, qua monarch, to interfere with it. The 

"republican" propaganda in Europe has been ar- 
rested by the American exemplifications. Thirty-two 
years ago, when I first visited England, there was a 
large and bold republican party and organisation, 
aiming to "Americanise" English institutions. The 
House of Lords was to be superseded by a Senate, 
the throne by a presidency, and so forth. In the 
course of one generation all that has disappeared. 
The English people have in that time secured institu- 
tions quite as free, and quite as representative, as 
those of an American State, but no one claiming the 
title of "republican " is left. This is the effect of the 
above tableaux, — the incompetency, repudiations, in- 
ability to protect personal liberty, displayed by our 
federal government across the Atlantic. And at the 
same time there has been a steady growth and in- 
crease of friendship for Americans. Their learning 
and literature have been more highly appreciated, 
their scholars have been honored by English universi- 
ties, and their citizens have been welcomed in the 
best English society. They have paid a compliment 
to Americans in the blank incredulity with which 
Cleveland's outbreak and Olney's billingsgate have 
been received, and their calm expectation of the truer 
American voice, which did not disappoint them. 

And is this not what is going on in America also? 
Do not Americans of culture and refinement feel that 
they are not really represented by the political jockeys 
at Washington, whose "legislation" from one four 
years to another looks only to win in the presidential 
finish ? Greedy partisans, trust-rings, silverites, lob- 
byists, may not pause in their eagerness for the stakes 
to see what the world sees, but are there not gentle- 
men who have still that decent regard for the opinion 
of mankind, to recall the Declaration of Independence, 
which can recognise the outrage that has been done ? 

Good heavens ! Think of the ruler of a great na- 
tion insulting another nation, and then appointing a 
commission to find out whether he may not be wrong 
and the other nation right ! The whole thing could 
have been examined just as well before as after the 
affront, and the ruinous smashing of his own furni- 
ture. Are Americans so ignorant as to be deluded by 
antiquated cries and names? If so, they are far be- 
hind European intelligence. European nations are 
not very fond of England, in most cases because of 
her freedom, but the}' can all discover the contrast 
between an imperial President proclaiming war for 
nothing, and a constitutional Prince returning, by per- 
mission of a ministry, the message of peace and good- 

Serious people in America should think of these 
things. They will hear the truth from any European. 
The English people, who really love Americans, will 
never run the risk of offending their susceptibilities by 



criticising our institutions. Even Mr. Bryce covers 
over his comments with so much sugar that his work 
has an effect of flattery. In other countries the oppo- 
nents of republicans are quite willing to have Ameri- 
can politicians continue to render European popula- 
tions increasingly content with their old-fashioned 
systems, which are steadily brought into harmony with 
their needs and aspirations. Under such conditions 
Cleveland's and Olney's spread-eagle screams have a 
droll sound of proceeding from some President Rip 
Van Winkle who went to sleep during our Revolution 
and supposes George III. still on the throne of Eng- 
land. But Europe sees King George to be on the 
American throne. And it is to be hoped that enough 
Americans recognise that indisputable fact to make 
his White House Majesty's — or shall we write it Mad- 
jesty's — suicidal fulmination a point of departure to- 
wards a real Republic. 

If Americans would leave off inoculating school 
children with errors, by teaching them from ignorant 
school-histories, which dwell on the follies of an in- 
sane king and an extinct England as if they were still 
characteristic ; if instead of this our children were 
taught something about our own faults, our presiden- 
tial robberies of Mexico, our oppression of negroes 
and Indians, we might see a rising generation able to 
deal with the organic faults which have rendered such 
things impossible. 

But even now one may hope that the intelligence 
of our people, assisted by the financial victims, will 
institute an inquest, and inquire whether their pre- 
scientific last-century Constitution, even with all its 
patches (several that make the rents worse) is worthy 
of them. The Constitution, even when made, was 
acknowledged to be a makeshift ; it was framed under 
urgency of danger, it had to compromise with slavery, 
with colonial jealousies, and with monarchical super- 
stitions. The mongrel instrument has necessitated a 
long reign of slavery, culminating in civil war ; it has 
given us a succession of monarchs of whom very few 
can bear the light of true history; it has seen the 
achievements of the nation's martyrdom saved from 
overthrow by a drunken traitor, Andrew Johnson, only 
by a congressional violation of the Constitution ; and 
it has lived to witness the Cleveland Christmas. 

How long is our so-called Republic to be in this 
puerile condition of subserviency to a man ? If Amer- 
ican thinkers, scholars, patriots, rise to this occasion, 
the close of this century will witness the end of the 
outworn Constitution ; a national convention is now 
the only possible compensation for the humiliations 
and disasters which the antiquated instrument has 
cost us; we have a right — nay, mankind have the 
right — to see a real American Republic greet the dawn 
of the twentieth century. 



In a republic every citizen has a vote, and as the 
majority of votes are cast, so the policy of the govern- 
ment is directed. Opinions control votes, so every 
citizen is more or less responsible for any influence 
which his opinions may have. In matters involving 
serious consequences, every conscientious man must 
endeavor to reach such opinions as will make for the 
good of the world, and contribute to its progress, so 
far as the material in his possession enables him to 
do so. 

In the dispute with Great Britain over the Vene- 
zuela boundary we have had a great deal of expres- 
sion from all quarters, some hasty, some careful ; some 
cool, and some excited. In the following paragraphs 
some of these opinions are passed in review, and an 
attempt is made to sift wheat from chaff. The writer 
permits himself to do this, not because of any espe- 
cial qualification for the task, but because he endeav- 
ors to look at the subject rather more coolly than some 
of those who have contributed to the discussion. 

Senator Lodge in the United States Senate, and 
Dr. J. B. McMasters, Professor of History in the Uni- 
versity of Pennsylvania, in the columns of the New 
York Times, have given us a concise history of the 
Monroe Doctrine up to date. These documents show 
to those not already familiar with the facts, that how- 
ever private opinions may have differed on this ques- 
tion, the government of the United States has main- 
tained it consistently as a definite policy from 1823, 
the date of its promulgation, to the presidency of James 
Buchanan inclusive. And it is also well known that it 
was maintained by President Lincoln in the year 1865 
with reference to the French occupation of Mexico. 
President Cleveland in maintaining it in the year 1895 
is therefore only continuing the policy of the United 
States for the last seventy-two years. Under these 
circumstances Congress has unanimously supported 
the President. 

In endeavoring to carry out this policy with ref- 
erence to the supposed attempt on the part of Great 
Britain to seize territory belonging to Venezuela, suc- 
cessive administrations have been for about eighteen 
years endeavoring to secure from the former country 
her consent to a commission to arbitrate the question. 
Our proposition has been peaceable, but Great Britain 
has rejected it. She has refused to furnish to our gov- 
ernment the opportunity of going over with her the 
evidence for and against her claim. She takes the 
position, ex cathedra, that the Monroe Doctrine does 
not apply in this case. Nothing remained to our gov- 
ernment then, but that it should make the investiga- 
tion alone, and so President Cleveland asked Congress 
for a commission, a request which was immediately 



granted. The President has now appointed the com- 

The English people and press have been much 
agitated over the action of the President and Con- 
gress, ascribing various motives to him often far from 
the true ones. They have however discovered that 
there is such a thing as the Monroe Doctrine, and that 
it is the settled policy of the United States to main- 
tain it. A good many people in the United States, 
however, have taken alarm at the possible results to 
follow from the course of the President and Congress, 
and are uttering through the newspaper press and 
otherwise, more or less vigorous objections to it. 
These objections come under three heads. First, that 
the present case of the Venezuelan boundary is not 
related to the Monroe Doctrine ; second, that the 
Monroe Doctrine is itself untenable. These are ra- 
tional grounds of objection which are bound to be met. 
There is, however, a large third class of irrational ob- 
jectors, who are evidently actuated by feelings of sen- 
timent, etc., and which may be briefly referred to 
here first. 

We are reminded that the tract of land in dispute 
is small (say equal to the State of New York), and 
that it is not worth quarrelling about. The size of 
the territory is, however, quite irrelevant in a matter 
of principle. Moreover, it is extremely fortunate that 
the tract is not larger or more important, as in that 
case the recognition of the Monroe Doctrine, if ap- 
plicable, would be less readily admitted. We are re- 
minded also that the inhabitants are of a race inferior 
to the English, and not related to us by ties of blood, 
as are the latter. But this also is irrelevant. Should 
the English at any future time outpopulate the Span- 
ish stock in any South American country, they could, 
since the form of government of the latter is republi- 
can, acquire control of it by constitutional methods. 
This would be a good thing for the world, and the 
Monroe Doctrine would in no way obstruct the result. 
If the forms of government in South America were 
monarchical or aristocratic as those of Europe, this 
result would not be so readily attained ; witness the 
position of the English inhabitants of the Transvaal. 
We are also told that the Monroe Doctrine has never 
been recognised as international law. This is no rea- 
son, however, why it should not become so. Whether 
it should become so or not will depend on its inherent 
merits or demerits. If it is important for good rea- 
sons that the United States should maintain it, we 
will endeavor to introduce it into the Laws of Nations. 
I will consider its merits later on. 

The weak objection that the British will not re- 
spect the result of the deliberation of the Commission 
appointed by President Cleveland, is also irrelevant, 
fhat nation has its administration to thank that the 

Commission is not international in character. More- 
over, the Commission was not constituted for the pur- 
pose of furnishing Great Britain with information, but 
for furnishing it to the government and people of the 
United States. If any information is conveyed to 
Great Britain on the subject it will not be by the Com- 
mission, but by the government of the United States. 
An objection more feeble in substance, though vehe- 
mently made, is that the form of the President's mes- 
sage was not conciliatory. But all parties will forget 
the matter of form, when they get to considering the 
questions involved, in a serious and rational frame of 
mind. This is the burden of the published letter of 
Professor James of Harvard University, which vigor- 
ously condemns the President, while admitting that 
his contention is a just one. Neither the American 
nor British nations will sacrifice themselves to a mat- 
ter of form, as Professor James seems to think both 
will now surely do. If as Professor James believes the 
President's message is inflammatory, it behooves him, 
and all of us not to be too ready to be ignited by it to 
too active combustion. 

We may now consider whether the Venezuelan 
boundary question, as it is now before us, comes 
within the scope of the Monroe Doctrine. To this 
question the answer must be, that we do not certainly 
know. It is to ascertain the truth of this matter that 
the Venezuelan commission has been appointed. Un- 
til the commission has reported the facts all confident 
assertions are premature. But it is to be understood 
that the action of the United States will be in accor- 
dance with its findings. This brings us to the ques- 
tion as to whether the Monroe Doctrine is a policy 
which this country does well to sustain, even at the 
risk of armed conflict. 

This, the ultimate question, which is the root of 
the whole matter, must be approached with due mod- 
esty, in view of the truth of the general proposition 
that any form of government is good, if administered 
with due regard to human rights. It is also true that 
any form of government administered without regard 
to those rights is bad. There are faults inherent in 
the republican form, as there are in the monarchical 
or oligarchical. With the exception, however, of a 
few citizens of our larger cities, Americans are gen- 
erally of the opinion that a republican form is better 
than any other, because it contains within itself the 
conditions for an administration more in accordance 
with human right than any other, and is therefore 
more likely to be so administered. Of course, those 
Americans who do not believe that our form of gov- 
ernment is the best cannot be relied on to sustain the 
Monroe Doctrine. In support of their contention 
these citizens join with foreigners and point to the 
rule of Tammany and its chiefs, Tweed and Croker, 



and to the corruption of municipal rule in some other 
cities. But both our internal and external critics for- 
get that the large cities are the centres of concentra- 
tion of the offscourings of Europe ; of people who are 
the legitimate product of the European system, whose 
existence in Europe furnishes the raison d'etre of ab- 
solutism. New York and Chicago especially, with 
their forty-five per cent, foreign population, cannot be 
regarded as representative American cities. Euro- 
peans generally mistake the sentiment of New York 
for that of the United States. They should, however, 
remember that the disloyalty of that city at the open- 
ing of the Civil War had no appreciable effect on the 
opinions of the country, and did not delay the sup- 
pression of the rebellion by a single day. The dis- 
loyal expressions recently heard there will disappear 
with equal rapidity. The New York World represents 
nothing American, and it was a lamentable minimisa- 
tion of the effect of the good intentions of the Prince 
of Wales, that he should have been inveigled into 
sending a friendly despatch to the American people 
through its scandal-stained columns. It was a mis- 
take quite as bad as his adoption of friendly relations 
with Richard Croker, the Tammany boss, who repre- 
sents nothing but what Americans detest and despise. 
Perhaps, however, it gives a hint of the natural affini- 
ties between persons who belong to privileged classes 
in all countries. 

The gist of the objections to the European systems 
of government is that they are, excepting that of 
France, much too largely administered by and on be- 
half of privileged persons and classes, and not suffi- 
ciently on behalf of the people. In the government 
proper of England, this condition is rather less con- 
spicuous than in the continental systems ; yet their 
aristocratic social system rules the British people with 
a grip quite as effective as any autocracy could do. 
The stratigraphy of the Englishman's mind is noto- 
rious, and while the English claim to be the freest peo- 
ple of Europe, many of them are saturated with an 
idea of human relations thoroughly false and unjust, 
and as oppressive and suppressive in its way as the 
military despotisms of the Continent or of South 
America. As a whole, the aristocratic systems of 
Europe are not so far removed from the products of 
our semi-European municipal systems as might at 
first sight appear. We have seen how the Europeans 
who live in them permit themselves to be governed 
by Tweeds and Crokers, et id otnne genus. Is there 
any reason to doubt that were the American element 
absent, this class of robbers would soon become the 
legitimate aristocracy of those cities, and administer 
their governments perpetually by hereditary right ? 
Such is at all events the history of the origin of most 
of the personnel of the aristocracies of all countries. 

Their privileged position is due either to unwilling or 
complaisant submission of the great bulk of the popu- 
lation to the robberies and pretensions of their ances- 
tors or themselves. 

The difference between the systems of America 
and Europe is this : that in this country we call a 
spade a spade, and stealing we call stealing. In Europe 
the robberies of the most enterprising robbers have 
been legitimised, and have become a part of the sys- 
tem under which the people live. Thus have arisen 
established royal families, nobilities, and churches. 
Under this system enormous sums of money are taken 
from the people and spent on persons either of no or 
small utility. The greater part of the land is pos- 
sessed by but few people. Thus fifty thousand per- 
sons out of England's thirty-six millions own nearly 
all the land. In an aristocratic country a man's fam- 
ily is as unsafe as his purse, not through the preva- 
lence of rape, but because of the enormous leverage 
offered by false social standards. And the serious 
part of all this is that it cannot be changed without a 
stupendous expenditure of blood and treasure. In a 
republican system, on the contrary, when evils creep 
in we can remedy them if we choose. The men who 
feel privileged to rob us we send to jail or drive from 
the country, sooner or later. And we do it with more 
or less ease as the percentage of European population 
is less or greater. Boss Tweed never accumulated as 
much money as have most European monarchs, and no 
American official ever possessed a tithe of the wealth 
of some of the English dukes. 

In a word, the aristocratic and monarchical sys- 
tems of the world are a crystallisation and establish- 
ment of the system of robbery of which we so much 
complain in our municipal governments, and they are 
tolerated by the same inferior class which constitutes 
a large part of the population of Europe. They repre- 
sent an inferior stage of human organisation, but one 
which it is probable is only temporary. It is probable 
that the people of several European countries are not 
yet adapted to a republican form of government, while 
it is equally probable that some other countries are 
ready for it. But will the governing classes step down 
and out with a good grace when the time arrives, or 
must each of those countries have its revolution after 
the manner of the French ? We cannot tell. 

Meanwhile let us save as much of the world to re- 
publicanism as we can. We probably need for our 
own existence that we shall sustain as far as possible 
the efforts of mankind to liberate themselves from the 
permanent rule of privileged classes. These classes 
hate America and everything American. They would 
suppress us if thej' could. We have no quarrel with 
the liberals and republicans of Europe, but unfortu- 
nately, except in the case of France, they do not con- 



trol their governments. It is absolutely necessary that 
we encourage every republic, however rudimental may 
be its republicanism, in order that the republics of the 
world may acquire sufficient weight to enforce tolera- 
tion and peace. In this lies our interest in the South 
American republics. Now that the last monarchy has 
left that continent, the Western Hemisphere is de- 
voted to republicanism, and in a short time the ag- 
gregate of its peoples will be so great as to secure 
them from molestation from any quarter whatsoever. 
No matter if some of them be more or less turbulent ; 
their condition is full of hope. Their systems are not 
crystallised and everything is possible to them. In 
Mexico we have an illustration of the progress on 
which Spanish America has entered. Excellent schools 
abound and industrial enterprise is active. The fine 
arts are cultivated with more success than in the 
United States. The calm and industrious Mexican 
Indian has quite as often improved as injured the 
Spanish immigrant race. 

Besides the extreme importance of preserving all 
America for the republican form of government, still 
another reason exists why the Monroe Doctrine is of 
great moment to the Western Hemisphere. The pe- 
culiar geographical positions of the peoples of Europe, 
their histories and policies which have grown out of 
them, are totally foreign to the American peoples. 
The relations of the European nations are complex, 
and are liable to become strained or hostile at any 
time. We cannot enter into their affairs and we de- 
sire that their mutual quarrels shall not involve us in 
any way. This they will surely do if they are per- 
mitted to partition South America as they are doing 
Africa and Asia. We must insist on the doctrine of 
mutual non-intervention. Of course we cannot inter- 
fere in cases where just causes of grievance exist, ex- 
cepting to insist that indemnities paid by American to 
European countries shall not consist of land. Thus 
the Corinto affair did not come within the scope of the 
Monroe Doctrine because no attempt at territorial 
seizure was made. 

Finally it remains to dispose of one more objec- 
tion to the Monroe Doctrine as a live policy of our 
Government. It is alleged that we must become in- 
volved in the revolutions of South American countries, 
and in their wars with Europe. A rational view of 
the Doctrine makes it clear that this is not the case. 
The sole practical application of this Doctrine is the 
restraint of European countries from acquiring terri- 
tory and hence political power in America, and it ex- 
tends to nothing else. 

The maintenance of the Monroe Doctrine is of 
great importance to the future of republican institu- 
tions, not only in America, but throughout the world. 
It is especially the function of the United States to 

lead in this great reform, and we should not shirk 
the responsibility which is clearly ours. No better op- 
portunity than the present can well be thrown in our 
way. Europe is tied up with her mutual antagonisms. 
England cannot leave the Hellespont and India un- 
guarded, and Germany cannot leave the Rhine pro- 
vinces open to France. For Italy and Spain we care 
nothing, and Russia is not interested, for she has Asia 
on her hands. Why should we hesitate? We have 
not hesitated, and it will be to the honor of President 
Cleveland and his administration, and of this Con- 
gress, that they have accepted the responsibility. Let 
us hope that before another change in the Govern- 
ment takes place, Cuba will be added to the repub- 
lican system of the United States. 

The preceding pages express the thoughts of the 
author as to the principles involved in the Venezuelan 
dispute. As usual, besides the irrelevancy of much 
that has been said and written on the subject, a cer- 
tain amount of bad feeling has been injected into the 
discussion. This is to be greatly deprecated, as it is 
the worst form of irrelevancy. The judgments on the 
part of some men of civilised races on other nations 
and races do not differ from those of savages. Be- 
cause some Englishman has done wrong, or has been 
rude to us, therefore all Englishmen are hateful. A 
German hates a Frenchman, because a very few 
Frenchmen precipitated a war with Germany. A 
Frenchman hates all Germans, because the war ended 
unfavorably to the interests of France, etc., etc. 
Nothing is more absurd than national likes and dis- 
likes. As an American, the present writer has learned 
to admire and respect men of all nations. English- 
men are at least as deserving of these sentiments as 
the people of any other nation. We should restrict 
our hostility to the man or the class of men who af- 
front or injure us, and it is safe to say that for all of 
our disputes with England we are chiefly, if not en- 
tirely, indebted to the privileged or aristocratic class. 
We can expect nothing else from them, as our system 
is a standing proof to the world that a nation may be 
successful and happy without a class corresponding 
to theirs. If we oppose them even to the point of 
arms we should remember that we are contending for 
a principle, rather than to gratify a feeling of hostility 
to a people, the great majority of whom are desirous 
of remaining friendly to us, and to whom we are bound 
by many ties that make for peace. 


The history of the Monroe Doctrine, which is ad- 
mirably set forth by ex-Gov. Gustav Koerner,^ is one 
thing, and its significance as a political maxim another. 

J See Tkf Open Court, No. 294, pp. 3623-3625. 



The latter may be a misconstruction of the former ; 
nevertheless it exists and we must reckon with it. 

What the Monroe Doctrine is in the minds of the 
people has been sufficiently shown by the official acts 
of President Cleveland, which have (and there cannot 
be the slightest doubt about it) the moral support of 
the great majority of our citizens. The Monroe Doc- 
trine means that the United States should pursue the 
policy which President Monroe proclaimed in his an- 
nual message of 1823. President Monroe said : 

"We owe it to candor and to the amicable relations existing 
between the United States and the allied powers to declare, that 
we should consider any attempt on their part to extend their sys- 
tem to any portion of this hemisphere as dangerous to our peace 
and safety. With the existing colonies of any European power 
we have not interfered, and shall not interfere ; but with the gov- 
ernments which have declared their independence and maintained 
it, and whose independence we have, on great consideration and 
principles, acknowledged, we could not view an interposition for 
oppressing them, or controlling in any other manner their destiny 
by any European power, in any other light than as a manifestation 
of an unfriendly disposition towards the United States." 

The Monroe Doctrine is no international law ; it is 
simply an aim or plan of policy pursued by the United 
States. It is not based upon a treaty with any of the 
powers, nor is it a pledge to interfere with the peace- 
ful or hostile relations that may originate between the 
South American republics and any one of the Euro- 
pean governments. The fact is that Napoleon 111., 
taking advantage of our weakness during the Civil 
War, attempted to create an empire after the pattern 
of European monarchies in Mexico, and had the Con- 
federacy of the Southern States succeeded in gaining 
and in maintaining their independence, what would 
have become of the United States and its broad and 
humanitarian ideals? 

As soon as the Civil War was over the government 
of the United States openly declared its intentions to 
invade Mexico unless the French troops were with- 
drawn. The United States had as little business in 
Mexico as they have now in Venezuela, but they can- 
not remain indifferent to the introduction of monarch- 
ical or aristocratic principles of government into either 
continent of the two Americas. Considering the com- 
plications that may arise in the course of time, they 
have unequivocally and openly declared it to be " dan- 
gerous to their peace and safety," and those powers 
who care to preserve the amicable relations with them 
must respect this declaration. 

Such is the Monroe Doctrine as it lives in the souls 
of a great number of American citizens, and in this 
sense must be interpreted President Cleveland's policy, 
who after the cool refusal of his offer of arbitration in 
the Venezuelan question, proposed in his message the 
appointment of a commission to definitely settle the 

claims of England. Now the questions arise, (i) Is the 
Monroe Doctrine based upon international justice? 
(2) Is it a wise policy? and (3) Would it be right to risk 
a war on account of a dispute between England and 
Venezuela, concerning a territory of comparatively 
little value ? 

As to the justice of the Monroe Doctrine we must 
remember that it is not a question of law but of pol- 
icy. It is a question of power, not of right or wrong. 
The United States have abstained from any inter- 
ference in the politics of the European powers, be- 
cause they do not wish to be implicated in their affairs 
and hope thus the better to preserve for themselves 
their own sphere of influence. The United States cer- 
tainly have the right to pursue a policy as much as 
any other State, and they may, as much as England 
or any other country, set a limit to their ambition, 
and may declare how far they mean to extend the 
sphere of their pretensions. This has been done in 
the Monroe Doctrine, and it was done at the sugges- 
tion of a great English statesman, who should have 
foreseen that the ghost could more easily be raised 
than laid. The Monroe Doctrine is at least as right 
as the hoisting of the English flag in a new territory; 
nay, it is unquestionably more right, for it is not based 
upon the intention of conquest, it is nothing but a 
proclamation of sympathy with the preservation and 
integrity of our American sister-republics, and a hint 
that we would be willing to assist them in case of any 
"intervention for the purpose of oppressing them or 
controlling in any manner their destiny." This is the 
intention of the Monroe Doctrine, and as such it is 
known in England as the policy of the United States of 
America, for even so thoroughly an English work as 
the Encyclopicdia Biitannica says (XXIII., p. 762): 

"The 'Monroe' Doctrine has remained the rule of foreign 
intercourse for all American parties." 

The Monroe Doctrine does not imply that the 
United States are pledged to go to war whenever an 
American republic should get into trouble with a Euro- 
pean power ; it leaves the United States a free hand 
to decide whether or not in each particular case it 
would be wise to interfere, but it declares openly and 
without reserve on which side our sympathies will be. 

Whether or not it would be wise to press the Monroe 
Doctrine at the present time and against so formidable 
a naval power as England is a question of politics which 
I do not wish to discuss ; it certain!}' teaches us that 
in order to meet all emergencies we should preserve 
the financial credit of the nation. American securities 
have fallen on account of the war rumors, but they 
rose again, although slowly, and would have risen 
more quickly if our currency were not endangered by 
the shortsighted debates and dubious attitude of our 
Senate. The financial question is a great issue in it- 



self and has directly nothing to do with the Monroe 
Doctrine, which latter simply means, and will always 
mean, whether or not the United States are willing to 
fight for the ideal of preserving America (so far as it 
is not in the hands of European powers) for indepen- 
dent American republics. 

At any rate, if England encroaches upon the terri- 
tory of any one of the American republics, she ought 
to know what to expect, and has no right to complain 
about a president of the United States who simply 
pursues the well-known traditional policy of his coun- 

This is an impartial statement of the situation, 
which in our opinion is radically misrepresented by 
our esteemed contributor Moncure D. Conway, whose 
denunciations of President Cleveland appear to lack 
all foundation. There is no jingoism in President 
Cleveland, nor is he the tool of rings and political 
jockeys. His good-will toward England and his love 
of peace cannot be doubted. His decisive stand in 
the Hawaiian question proved that he can turn a deaf 
ear to the temptation of extending the territory of the 
United States, but if for that reason the English gov- 
ernment imagined that he would abandon all attempts 
whatever at pursuing a foreign policy, allowing the 
traditional aspirations of his country to die out, they 
were gravely mistaken in him. 

As to Mr. Conway's wholesale attack upon Amer- 
ican institutions, we submit that every good American 
citizen knows how far we still are from having at- 
tained the ideal of a truly republican administration. 
There are grievous diseases in our body politic, but 
he who denies that much progress, although it may be 
slow, has been made and is still being made, is not 
familiar with the state of things on this side of the At- 
lantic. England certainly cannot, nor can an)' one of 
the European nations, boast of being free from faults. 
The faults of England are partly the same as ours 
and lie partly in other fields. The text-books of 
history officially used in the schools of England and 
other European countries are not less falsified than 
those of the United States. Was there never a sud- 
den rise or fall of securities consequent upon the ac- 
tions of European prime ministers, such as Bismark, 
Palmerston, and others ? If the President's sympa- 
thy with the wrongs which he cannot help supposing 
a weak little State has suffered from the hands of 
powerful England, be an affront, what shall we think 
of Emperor William who, a crowned monarch himself 
and a grandson of the Queen of Great Britain, could 
not refrain from congratulating the president of a small 
republic in the interior of Africa for having again re- 
pelled the encroachments of English usurpation ? The 
Boers are anxious to remain Dutch Boers, and object 
to being governed by an English gold-mining com- 

pany and their officials. Much may be said in favor of 
either side, the Boers and the English ; nonetheless, 
both questions, that of Transvaal and that of Vene- 
zuela, are not simply monarchy versus republic, but 
independence versus intrusion. However, there is 
this difference, Emperor William yielded to an out- 
burst of sentiment, while President Cleveland obeyed 
the call of duty as understood by himself and by the 
nation that he represents. 

The new nation that is coalescing here from the 
various ingredients of European countries, is more 
than five-sixths Teutonic and almost half Anglo-Saxon. 
No wonder that we have a deep-seated feeling of kin- 
ship toward England, as also toward Germany and 
other European countries ; but this feeling of kinship 
can only be preserved on the condition that our na- 
tional ideals and aspirations are respected. 

And we have the confidence that both the English 
Government and the English people will respect them, 
so much so that President Cleveland has as yet found 
it unnecessary to make preparations for war. 

There is certainly no need of defending President 
Cleveland for upholding the Monroe Doctrine. The 
question was simply whether or not the nation would 
stand by him ; and the Senate as well as the people 
were not reluctant with their endorsement. 

The endorsement of Cleveland's policy by the na- 
tion came not in the form of chauvinistic outbursts 
but in the quiet determination of being willing to take 
the consequences, whatever they might be. p. c. 



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The Open Court. 

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Among the authors who have written on the sub- 
jects of Brahmanism and Buddhism Sir Monier Mo- 
nier-Wilhams, Boden Professor of Sanskrit at Oxford, 
is one of the most distinguished and prominent author- 
ities. Not only are his Sanskrit Dictionary, Grammar, 
and Manual standard works of philological scholar- 
ship, but also his translations exhibit the genius of a 
poet who can re-think and re-feel the ideas of bards 
who lived in ages long past and uttered thoughts which 
it is difficult for us to comprehend in their original 
significance. There can be no doubt but Sir Monier 
Monier- Williams's books on Brahmanism and Hindu- 
ism and on Buddhism give us most reliable and instruc- 
tive information concerning the two great religions 
of India, and I confess that their study has proved to 
me extremely profitable. But one point challenges 
my opposition ; it is, not that he writes from the 
standpoint of a Christian, for he has not only a right, 
but is even under the obligation to do so ; nor is it 
that his works possess the character of contributions 
to Christian apologetics, a mission which is implied 
in the duties of the Boden professorship held by him : 
it is that he narrows Christianity to the dogmatic con- 
ception of the Anglican church creeds, and establishes 
on this ground distinctions which, if tenable, will not, 
as Sir Monier believes, lift Christianity above Bud- 
dhism, but, on the contrary, would give the first place 
to Buddhism and annul all the claims that Christian- 
ity may make to catholicity. 

Professor Williams openly states that he has "de- 
picted Buddhism from the standpoint of a believer in 
Christianity" (p. ix), and when delivering in 1888 his 
Duff-Lectures which form the nucleus of his book on 
Buddhism, he expressed his "deep sense of the re- 
sponsibility which the writing of these Lectures had 
laid upon him and his earnest desire that they may 
by their usefulness prove in some degree worthy of 
the great missionary whose name they bear. "^ Even 
the title of the book announces that Buddhism is 
treated "in its contrast with Christianity." 

After these statements we are prepared for an ex 

1 Quoted literally, only changing " me " into " him." 

parte exposition of Buddha's doctrines which, however, 
considering the antagonistic attitude of Sir Monier 
Monier- Williams is as just and fair as can be expected. 
The book is valuable on account of its author's un- 
questionable ability in selecting and marshalling his 
materials in a masterly way, but it is marred by re- 
peated attempts to belittle Buddha, "who," Sir Mo- 
nier says, "if not worthy to be called the 'Light of 
Asia,' and certainly unworthy of comparison with the 
' Light of the World,' was at least one of the world's 
most successful teachers." In spite of Buddha's al- 
leged unworthiness to be compared with Christ, Sir 
Monier compares the two constantly; he does so in 
spite of himself, and all Christians do so and cannot 
help doing so, because the comparison forces itself 
upon every one who familiarises himself with the lives 
of these two greatest religious leaders of mankind. 

Professor Williams is undoubtedly anxious to be 
just toward Buddha, but we cannot help taking him to 
task for a certain animosity which is shown in occa- 
sional distortions of the accounts of Buddha's life and 
doctrines. Thus he says, when Buddha preached to 
his disciples, his sermon "was addressed to monks," 
while "that of Christ was addressed not to monks but 
to suffering sinners " (p. 44), as if the disciples of 
Christ where not in the same predicament as the 
monks that followed Buddha ; for Christ's disciples, 
too, had forsaken their homes in order to devote them- 
selves exclusively to the salvation of their souls. The 
term "monk" smacks of a Roman Catholic institu- 
tion that has become odious in Protestant countries. 
On the other hand, the word "sinner" expresses a 
self-humiliation popular in certain Christian circles 
only, but offensive to those who believe in the dignity 
of man. Albeit, whether monks or sinners, both the 
disciples of Buddha and Christ were salvation-seeking 

An actual misrepresentation, prompted by an un- 
conscious disdain for Buddha, lies in the following 
passage : 

"The story is that Gautama died from eating too much pork 
(or dried boar's ilesh). As this is somewhs^t derogatory to his 
dignity it is not likely to have been fabricated. A fabrication, 
too, would scarcely make him guilty of the inconsistency of say- 
ing 'Kill no living thing,' and yet setting an example of eating 



The fact is, that according to the common and 
probably reliable tradition, Buddha's last meal con- 
sisted in dried boar's meat and rice given him by the 
smith Chunda of Pava ; and we must not forget the 
advanced age of the great Shakyamuni, whose life at 
the time of his death was four score years. I have 
been unable to discover any report which states that 
Buddha ate "too much," but there are reports stat- 
ing that the meat was not fit to eat. Whatever the 
condition of the meat may have been, it is certain that 
while the great majority of Buddhists abstain from 
meat, Buddha taught that salvation could not be ob- 
tained by abstinence from meat alone but by purity of 
heart. Professor Williams probably remembers the 
Amagandha-sutta which sets forth that evil habits, 
wicked deeds, and impure thoughts defile a man, but 
not the eating of flesh — a declaration seven times em- 
phasised in the refrain of the verses 4-10. 

Accordingly, there is no inconsistency in Buddha's 
eating meat, yet as to the statement that Buddha ate 
"too much," we can only say that it is an unjustifiable 
accusation which we confidently hope Professor Wil- 
liams will expunge from eventual future editions of his 
book. Buddha probably often enough ate disgusting 
food on his wanderings through the country of Maga- 
dha, for he was not always the guest of kings, but more 
often a recipient of the hospitality of poor villagers — 
a fact which is not only in itself probable, but is actu- 
ally mentioned in various Chinese accounts of Bud- 
dha's life, as, for instance, in the Fo-Sho-Hing-Tsan- 
King. Considering the hot climate of India, too, it is 
not improbable, that the meat Buddha ate for his last 
meal was tainted. Such in fact is the report of the 
Mahaparinibbana Sutta IV., 19, where we read : 

"Now the Blessed One addressed Chunda, the worker in 
metals, and said : ' Whatever dried boar's flesh, Chunda, is left 
over to thee, that bury in a hole. I see no one, Chunda, on earth 
nor in Mora's domain, nor in the Brahma's heaven, no one among 
Samanas and Bramanas, among gods and men, by whom, when 
he has eaten it, that food can be assimilated, save by the Tathd- 

" 'Even so. Lord!' said Chunda, the worker in metals, in 
assent, to the Blessed One. And whatever dried boar's flesh re- 
mained over, that he buried in a hole." 

In the face of death, and suffering from the pains 
of the consequence of his last meal, Buddha reveals a 
nobility of character, which shows that he was not 
only great, but also amiable. When Buddha felt that 
his end drew near, he said : 

" Now it may happen, Ananda, that some one should stir up 
remorse in Chunda, the smith, by saying, "This is evil to thee, 
Chunda, and loss to thee in that when the TathSgata had eaten 
his last meal from thy provision, then he died." Any such re- 
morse, Ananda, in Chunda, the smith, should be checked by say- 
ing, ' This is good to thee, Chunda, and gain to thee, in that when 
the Tathagata had eaten his last meal from thy provision, then he 
died. . , . There has been laid up by Chunda, the smith, a karma 

redounding to length of life, redounding to good birth, redounding 
to good fortune, redounding to good fame, redounding to the in- 
heritance of heaven, and of sovereign power.' In this way, 
Ananda, should be checked any remorse in Chunda, the smith." 

While Buddha rejected the idea of obtaining sal- 
vation through abstinence from flesh food, he cer- 
tainly did not encourage the slaughter of animals for 
the sake of making food of them. Thus a great num- 
ber of Buddhists abstain from eating fish and meat ; 
but there are some Buddhists (I refer, for instance, to 
the Shin-Shiu, the largest sect of Japan) who do eat 
fish and flesh, and they are recognised as good Bud- 
dhists as much as Lutherans may be called good 

There is no need of picking out all the passages in 
Sir Monier Monier-Williams's book on Buddhism 
which appear to be dictated by a partisan spirit favor- 
ing a dogmatic conception of Christianity and apt to 
prove offensive to the followers of Buddha. I shall, 
therefore, limit my critical remarks to the last chap- 
ter of the book, entitled "Buddhism, contrasted with 
Christianity " (pp. 337-563)- 

Professor Williams says : "Christianity is a reli- 
gion, whereas Buddhism, at least in its earliest and 
truest form, is no religion at all." And why not ? Be- 

"A religion, in the proper sense of the word, must postulate 
the existence of one living and true God of infinite power, wisdom, 
and love, the Creator, Designer, and Preserver of all things visible 
and invisible. It must also take for granted the immortality of 
man's soul or spirit. . . . Starting from these assumptions, it must 
satisfy four requisites: (i) it must reveal the Creator, (2) it must 
reveal man to himself, (3) it must reveal some method by which 
the finite creature may communicate with the infinite Creator, (4) 
it must prove its title to be called a religion by its regenerating 
effect on man's nature." 

We must add that Professor Williams apparently 
understands by God and soul the traditional concep- 
tions of dogmatic Christianity; and his faith in God 
and soul is a mere "postulate," for in the realm of 
experience no trace can be found of either. Thus our 
knowledge of both must be attributed to a special and 
supernatural revelation. The word "reveal" in the 
passage quoted is intended to be understood in the 
narrow sense, as opposed to the revelations of the 
senses and of science. 

What a poor comfort is the belief in a postulated 
and specially revealed God ! A postulated God is dis- 
tant and hidden — even to the sages of the most en- 
lightened pagans. We are informed that what they, 
the "unaided," know of noble and elevating truths is 
a mere natural product of their investigation ; it is at 
best what any scientist can discover by the usual meth- 
ods of scientific inquiry. Their God, it appears, can 
only be the God of the Religion of Science, who is the 
divinity of existence, the eternal condition of man's 
rationality, the standard of all truth, and the authority 




of right and justice; but not a metaphysical ego-deity 
whose existence can only be known by an act of special 

We must add that, in our opinion, the God of dog- 
matism is not the God of the Israelitic prophets, nor 
of Paul, nor of Christ. The founders of Christianity 
were as broad as Socrates, as Lao-tsz', and even as 
Buddha — though Buddha was the broadest of all. 
They proclaimed no Quicunque ; the condition of sal- 
vation which they held out to the poor in spirit re- 
sembled closely the Dharma of Buddha, but not the 
Thirty-nine Articles of the Anglican Church, nor the 
confession of faith of any other Christian church. It 
would take too much space to reprint any one of them, 
be it the Augustana of the Lutherans, or the Thirty- 
nine Articles of the Episcopalians, or the Westminster 
Confession, or the decrees of the Tridentinum, or a 
papal bull, perhaps the famous bull of Innocence VIII., 
issued in 1484, which brought the terrors of the witch 
persecutions down on Europe.^ 

There is none of these but contains the most irra- 
tional and even barbarous and immoral propositions 
proclaimed in the name of God and professing to be 
the true and orthodox interpretation of God's revela- 
tion. Compare any one with Buddha's Dharma, which 
is briefly condensed in the famous stanza: 
"To abandon all wrong-doing, 

To lead a virtuous life 

And cleanse one's heart. 

That is the religion of all Buddhas. " 

Buddha's religion is very much like that of Christ, 
but it differs greatly from the Christianity of Christian 
dogmatism. Christ requests men to hdjwa faith (i. e., 
Hebrew amiinah, firmness of character, or Greek nia- 
rz?, faithfulness or fidelity), which is a moral quality 
implying steadfast confidence ; the churches demand 
belief, i. e. taking something for granted. We cannot 
live without faith, but we can very well exist without 
belief, for we can be faithful in the performance of 
our duties, the correctness of which we may be able 
to know and understand. In fact, whenever belief is 
necessary, it plays a mere temporary part, for we must 
strive with might and main to replace it by knowledge. 

Measured by the standard of Professor Williams's 
religious ideal, (which, being the Christianity of belief, 
not of faith, starts, as he expressly states it, from 
"assumptions," and is based upon a "taking for 
granted,") Buddhism is no religion at all. For, says 
he of Buddhism : 

" It failed to satisfy these conditions. It refused to admit the 
existence of a personal Creator, or of man's dependence on a 
higher Power. It denied any eternal soul or Ego in man. It 
acknowledged no external, supernatural revelation. It had no 
priesthood — no real clergy; no real prayer; no real worship. It 
had no true idea of sin, or of the need of pardon, and it con- 
JThe bull is kaowD by its initial words : '■Sutn7nis desiderantcs affectibus." 

demned man to suffer the consequences of his own sinful acts 
without hope of help from any Saviour or Redeemer, and indeed 
from any being but himself," 

Now, as I understand Buddhism, all these draw- 
backs are its greatest glory; and if there is any truth 
in Christianity, Christianity also must possess these 
very same features. 

Professor Williams says on page 14 : 

" Buddhism — with no God higher than the perfect man — has 
no pretensions to be called a religion in the true sense of the 

Remember that Christ was crucified on the charge 
of blasphemy. If the dogmas of Christianity have any 
meaning at all, they proclaim this central truth of all 
genuine religion, that the Deity is revealed in human- 
ity; God is nothing more nor less than those eternal 
conditions of being which beget man — i. e., the ra- 
tional and morally aspiring being. Christ is God's 
equal. God is the Father, Christ is the Son ; and the 
Son and the Father are one. In a word, the signifi- 
cance of Christianity is that God reveals himself in 
the perfect man. The ideal of human perfection is 
identical with true divinity. 

Buddhism developed the idea of Amitabha Bud- 
dha, personifying in him the omnipresent conditions 
of enlightenment. There is no God higher than Bud- 
dha, and there is nothing greater in God than that 
which produces the ideal of a perfect man. 

But Buddhism denies the existence of "a soul or 
ego." Very well ! Did Christ ever teach that the soul 
of man is his ego? If the belief in an ego-soul were 
one of the essential ingredients of "a religion in the 
proper sense of the word," Christ should have enlight- 
ened us about it. He did nothing of the kind, and 
this being so, we must begin seriously to doubt whether 
Christ ever taught a religion in the proper sense of the 
word. Indeed if Buddha's doctrine of the soul is nihi- 
listic and pessimistic, we must say the same of St. 
Paul, for he declares that he himself has been crucified 
with Christ, and that not he himself, i. e., Paul, liveth, 
but Christ liveth in him. 

As to prayer we can only say that Christ did his 
best to abolish "real prayer," (that is, prayer in the 
sense of begging) by instituting for it the Lord's 
prayer, which is no prayer in the proper sense of the 
word. Christ said : "When thou prayest thou shaft 
not be as the hypocrites are ; . . . when ye pray use not 
vain repetitions as the heathen do, . . . yourfatherknow- 
eth what things ye have need of, before ye ask him." 
The Lord's prayer, accordingly, is a prayer which con- 
tains no prayers whatever ; the fourth supplication, 
"give us this day our daily bread," appears as a re- 
quest, but considered in the context of the whole Ser- 
mon on the Mount, we find that Christ emphasises the 
word "this day," which must be interpreted as noth- 



ing else than the injunction "Take no thought for the 
morrow ! " 

The same is true of the fifth supplication, "For- 
give us our trespasses, as we forgive those who tres- 
pass against us." The burden of these words lies in 
the clause introduced by "as," which again is no 
prayer, but contains a vow. 

The Lord's prayer is not so much addressed to 
God who "knoweth what things we have need of," but 
to the person who wants to pray. It is no begging, 
but a self-discipline. It satisfies a craving which is 
natural in weak-hearted persons, in adult children, but 
unworthy of a man. In the form of a prayer, the Lord's 
prayer abolishes " real prayer. " It teaches man no 
longer to pray, or to attempt to change the will of 
God, but to change the will of the praying person, by 
saying "not my will but God's will must be done." 
"Real prayer" is a heathenish notion implicating the 
heart in hypocrisy. 

If there is any philosopher of weight who can be 
called Christian it is Kant. Educated by pious par- 
ents, and himself deeply religious, he preserved of the 
faith of his childhood as much as possible ; and hear 
what he says about prayer : 

" To expect of prayer other than natural effects is foolish and 
needs no explicit refutation. We can only ask, Is not prayer to 
be retained for the sake of its natural effects ? Among the natural 
effects we count that the dark and confused ideas present in the 
soul are either clarified through prayer, or that they receive a 
higher degree of intensity; that the motives of a virtue receive 
greater efficacy, etc., etc. 

"We have to say that prayer can, for the reasons adduced, 
be recommended only subjectively, for he who can in another 
way attain to the effects for which prayer is recommended will not 
be in need of it. 

"A man may think, 'If I pray to God, it can hurt me in no 
wise ; for should he not exist, very well ! in that case I have done 
too much of a good thing ; but if he does exist, it will help me.' 
This Prosopopoia (face-making) is hypocrisy, for we have to pre- 
suppose in prayer that he who prays is firmly convinced that God 

"The consequence of this is that he who has made great 
moral progress ceases to pray, for honesty is one of his principal 
maxims. And further, that those whom one surprises in prayer 
are ashamed of themselves. 

"In public sermons before the public, prayer must be re- 
tained, because it can be rhetorically of great effect, and can make 
a great impression. Moreover, in sermons before the people one 
has to appeal to their sensuality, and must, as much as possible, 
stoop down to them." 

The Buddhist prayer is of the same nature as the 
Lord's prayer, in the sense in which we conceive it and 
as Kant would have interpreted its purport. It is no 
longer a prayer in the proper sense of the word ; it is 
a vow. Like the Lord's prayer, the Buddhist vows 
teach men to take refuge in religion, and that is more 
than any "real prayer" can ask or do for us. 

Professor Williams says (p. 544), "the main idea 
implied by Buddhism is intellectual enlightenment." 

With all deference to Professor Williams's knowledge 
of the significance of Buddhist doctrines, we must beg 
him to omit the word "intellectual." Buddha's idea 
of "enlightenment" (in contradistinction to Christian 
dogmatism) certainly includes "intellectual enlight- 
enment," but it is first and last and mainly an enlight- 
enment of the heart. 

Professor Williams says : 

"What says our Bible? We Christians, it says, are mem- 
bers of Christ's Body— of His flesh and of His bones — of that Di- 
vine Body which was once a suffering Body, a cross-bearing Body, 
and is now a glorified Body, an ever-living, life-giving Body. 
Hence it teaches us to honor and revere the human body ; nay, 
almost to deify the human body. 

"A Buddhist, on the other hand, treats every kind of body 
with contempt, and repudiates as a simple impossibility, all idea 
of being a member of the Buddha's body. How could a Buddhist 
be a member of a body which was burnt to ashes — which was 
calcined, — which became extinct at the moment when the Bud- 
dha's whole personality became extinguished also ?" 

Here we have a new Christology and a new Chris- 
tian dogma which demands Christians "almost to 
deify the human body." The passage to which Pro- 
fessor Williams refers (I. Cor. vi., 15-20) cannot be 
interpreted in the sense that Christians "are members 
of Christ's body — of His flesh and of His bones." For 
in that very passage we read : 

"He that is joined unto the Lord is one spirit." 

Further says Paul : 

" O wretched man that I am, who shall deliver me from the 
body of this death." (Rom. vii., 24.) 

The New Testament treats the body as forfeited to 
death ; and there is certainly truth in this view, al- 
though it has been wrongly interpreted in Christian 
asceticism and monk morality. As to Buddha, it is 
well known that while he did not seek the pleasures 
of the body, he spurned asceticism as a wrong method 
of seeking salvation. Whenever Buddhists retained 
mortifications they did so in violation of the most un- 
equivocal injunctions and of the historically best as- 
sured traditions of Buddha's Dharma. As to "the 
Body of Buddha,-" Professor Williams overlooks here 
the well-known Buddhist doctrine that Buddha's body 
is the Dharma. When Buddha died, his bodily life 
was dissolved into non-existence, but not his doctrine. 
His individuality was gone, but not the enlightenment 
of his Buddhahood. We read in " The Book of the 
Great Decease" (Chap. VI., i) : 

"Now the Blessed One addressed the venerable Ananda, and 
said : ' It may be, Ananda, that in some of you the thought may 
arise, "The word of the Master is ended, we have no teacher 
more ! " But it is not thus, Ananda, that you should regard it. 
The truths and the rules of the order which I have set forth and 
laid down for you all, let them, after I am gone, be the Teacher 
to you.' " 

Further Professor Williams says : 

"The Buddha had no idea of sin as an offence against God 



(p. 546). Nor did the Buddha ever claim to be a deliverer from 
guilt, a purger from the taints of past pollution. . . . On the con- 
trary, by his doctrine of Karma he bound a man hand and foot to 
the inevitable consequences of his own evil actions vfith chains of 
adamant. He said, in effect, to every one of his disciples, 'You 
are in slavery to a tyrant of your own setting up ; your own deeds, 
v/ords, and thoughts in your present and former states of being, 
are your own avengers through a countless series of existences. 

" ' If you have been a murderer, a thief, a liar, impure, a 
drunkard, you must pay the penalty in your next birth . . . your 
doom is sealed. Not in the heavens, O man, not in the midst of 
the sea, not if thou hidest thyself in the clefts of the mountains, 
wilt thou find a place where thou canst escape the force of thine 
own evil actions. Thy only hope of salvation is in thyself. Neither 
god nor man can save thee, and I am wholly powerless to set thee 
free." " 

Buddha teaches that the evil consequences of er- 
ror, sin, and wrongdoing cannot be escaped ; but the 
passage to which Professor Williams refers is incom- 
plete without its counter-truth, that good deeds, too, 
will not fail to bear good fruits. Buddha teaches : 

"As the welcome of kinsfolk and friends awaits him who has 
been abroad and is now returning in safety: so the fruits of his 
good works greet the man who has walked in the path of righteous- 
ness when he passes over from the present life into the hereafter." 

To quote the one without the other would be the 
same as if some one cited from the New Testament 
the words, "He who does not believe shall be damned," 
and forgets to add the counter proposition, "He who 
believes shall be saved." 

In Professor Williams's opinion, Christianity is 
superior to Buddhism, because it is said actually to 
relieve the believer from the consequences of sin. He 
continues : 

"And now, contrast the few brief words of Christ in his first 
recorded sermon. ' The spirit of the Lord is upon Me, because 
He hath anointed Me to preach good tidings to the poor ; He hath 
sent Me to proclaim liberty to the captives, and recovering of sight 
to the blind, and the opening of the prison to them that are 
bound.' " 

Buddha would never have said, "the spirit of the 
Lord is upon me," (which is a peculiarly Hebrew ex- 
pression,) and it is very improbable that Christ would 
ever have thought of saying anything like it. As to the 
substance of this proclamation. Professor Williams 
will be aware that both Buddha and Christ promised 
to give liberty to the captives, the recovery of sight to 
the blind, and the faculty of comprehension to the deaf. 

Professor Williams sums up : 

"Yes, in Christ alone there is deliverance from the bondage 
of former transgressions, from the prison-house of former sins ; a 
total cancelling of the past ; a complete blotting-out of the hand- 
writing that is against us ; an entire washing away of every guilty 
stain ; the opening of a clear course for every man to start afresh ; 
the free gift of pardon and of life to every criminal, to every sin- 
ner — even the most heinous and inveterate." 

Captain C. Pfoundes, a resident of Japan, who has 
made a study of Japanese Buddhism, says on the sub- 

ject of the doctrine of atonement, viewing it from a 
purely practical standpoint : 

"It is all too true, and more the pity it is that it is so, that 
the converts (nominal) to Christianity are largely natives whose 
conduct is such that by the general opinion of foreign residents 
such converts are not the most desirable class to employ. The 
true Buddhist has ever in mind the fear of punishment hereafter 
for misdeeds, not to be lightly atoned for. ' The naughty little 
boy who is always ready to say he " is sorry," if he is assured that 
this will obtain forgiveness,' has no counterpart in true Buddhism ; 
and the too easily purchased pardon of Christian mission teaching 
is viewed as a danger, from the ethical standpoint, by the educated 
and intelligent Asiatic." 

If the essence of Christianity consists in the hope 
of an entire washing away of every guilty stain and 
getting rid of the consequences of our evil deeds, we 
can only hope that the civilised nations of mankind 
will abandon Christianity. Buddha's doctrine is cer- 
tainly grander and, what is more, truer than this hollow 
doctrine of a salvation of the guilty by the death of the 
innocent. Buddha, when speaking of sacrifices, re- 
jected the idea that blood can wash away sins, and 
when he regarded himself as the saviour of man, he 
meant that he was their teacher. He claimed to have 
pointed out the way of salvation and to have removed 
the cataract from the eyes of the blind, but he expects 
every one of his followers to exert himself when walk- 
ing on the path. 

A man converted from sin is saved in the sense 
that henceforth he will walk in the right direction ; 
his character is changed ; he turns over a new leaf, 
but he cannot annihilate the past and the consequences 
of his former karma. 

The dogma of the vicarious atonement through 
Christ's death is a survival of the age of barbarism ; 
for it is based upon the savage's idea of religion which 
represents God as an Apache chieftain who, when 
offended, thirsts for the death of somebody and must 
be pacified with blood. 

He who believes it necessary to "postulate" the 
existence of a metaphysical atman-God in addition to 
the real God, whose presence appears in the facts of ex- 
perience, and of a purusha-soul in addition to the 
psychic realities of our life, will naturally regard the 
extinction of the illusion of "the thought '/ am,'" 
(i. e., the error of the existence of an individual ego- 
self) and of an individual God-being, as dreary nihilism 
and "morbid pessimism." Professor Williams says : 

" What is Buddhism ? If it were possible to reply to the in- 
quiry in one word, one might perhaps say that true Buddhism, 
theoretically stated, is Humanitarianism, meaning by that term 
something very like the gospel of humanity preached by the Posi- 
tivist, whose doctrine is the elevation of man through man — that 
is, through human intellects, human intuitions, human teaching, 
human experiences, and accumulated human efforts — to the high- 
est ideal of perfection ; and yet something very different. For the 
Buddhist ideal differs toto ccelo from the Positivist's, and consists 



in the renunciation of all personal existence, even to the extinc- 
tion of humanity itself. The Buddhist's perfection is destruction. " 

The Buddhist perfection consists in the complete 
surrender of the illusion of an ego-self ; and Professor 
Williams meant to say that the Buddhist's perfection 
should, from his standpoint of a believer in an ego- 
self, be regarded as tantamount to destruction ; for 
he knows very well, and happily says it too, that it 
is not so. But so little does Professor Williams un- 
derstand the positivism of Buddha's doctrine, that 
he regards Buddha as inconsistent, because, instead of 
proclaiming the ideal of destruction, or surrendering 
himself to quietism, Buddha rouses himself and his fol- 
lowers to energetic work and sympathetic usefulness. 

Professor Williams says : 

"In fact it was characteristic of a supreme Buddha that he 
should belie, by his own activity and compassionate feelings, the 
utter apathy and indifference to which his own doctrines logically 

According to my comprehension of Buddhism, 
Buddha need not in his ethics belie his own doctrines ; 
for his ethics are an immediate consequence of his 
doctrines. Should not Professor Williams first sus- 
pect his conception of Buddhism, before he imputes 
to so profound and clear a thinker, as Buddha unques- 
tionably was, a gross inconsistency on the main issues 
of his religion ? 

A few days ago I received a booklet entitled Hap- 
piness which is a comparison of Christianity with Bud- 
dhism from a Buddhist standpoint. It is ostensibly 
written by a Buddhist who presents a friend and co- 
religionist with the impressions he receives during a 
sojourn in England. In spite of its crude make-up 
the booklet is cleverly designed and makes some good 
points which are decided hits on a literal belief in 
dogmatic Christianity. Salvation is defined by this 
Buddhist author as "The destruction of ego or of the 
misery of existence." He adds : "I find that they [the 
Christians] always think we mean the destruction of 
existence itself and not of the misery." Concerning 
the Christian idea of salvation he says : "They im- 
agine they go to their heaven, ego and all ; throwing 
their blackest sins on the shoulders of their God." 

The Buddhist and Christian conceptions of reli- 
gion are contrasted as follows : 

"Ours. Destruction of Ego by knowledge, gratitude, and 
love ; the practice of which is intense happiness. 

" Theirs is more the worship of God, chiefly for the forgive- 
ness of sin, as if such forgiveness were possible, without suffering ; 
whilst ours is the destruction of the evil itself." 

When speaking about the doctrine of atonement, 
our Buddhist author says : 

"This strange idea arises I think from their notion of a des- 
potic and capricious Cod, who forgives or condemns in a moment 
without reason, yet, at the same time, with this unmerciful God 

there is no forgiveness — l/ic debt of sin must be paid with innocent 
blood, though it involve the sacrifice of his own innocent son." 

Several paragraphs are devoted to prayer which 
with Buddhists is "contemplation and self-examina- 
tion." Speaking of the Lord's prayer our Buddhist 
critic says : 

" You would think Him [the God of the Christians] an in- 
competent being, when they set Him a good example — 'Forgive 
us ... as we forgive.' But if He followed their example He would 
rarely forgive them. 

"Again, you would say they were praying to some evil spirit, 
when they beg him not to lead them into temptation." 

The Buddhist and Christian conceptions of Hell 
are tersely condensed in these statements : 

' ' Ours. The effect of obedience to Ego, here and hereafter, 
while it lasts. 

" Their Hell is like their Heaven, a place — not a state — where 
the identical earthly bodies of nearly all humanity will be tor- 
mented in actual fire for ever ; to no purpose, except to satisfy 
the vindictiveness of their Creator, whom they call the ' God of 

" They do not see that it is the Ego that tortures, and not God; 
that he cannot torture, and has no Hell." 

These quotations show how easily a religion is mis- 
represented, but we are sorry to say that the great 
mass of Christians justify the above criticism by ac- 
tually believing in the letter of their dogmas. We 
trust that there is a nobler Christianity than Christian 
dogmatism, but Sir Monier Monier-Williams regards 
the belief in the atonement of sin by the innocent 
blood of Christ, the efficacy of real prayer, the reality 
of an ego-soul, and the existence of a personal and 
miracle-working God-Creator, as the essence of Chris- 

In a summary of his comparison of Christianity 
with Buddhism, Professor Williams says : 

"Buddhism, I repeat, says: Act righteously through your 
own efforts, and for the final getting rid of all suffering, of all in- 
dividuality, of all life in yourselves, Christianity says: Be right- 
eous through a power implanted in you from above, through the 
power of a life-giving principle, freely given to you, and always 
abiding in you. The Buddha said to his followers : 'Take noth- 
ing from me, trust to yourselves alone.' Christ said : ' Take all 
from Me ; trust not to yourselves. I give unto you eternal life, I 
give unto you the bread of heaven, I give unto you living water.' 
Not that these priceless gifts involve any passive condition of in- 
action. On the contrary, they stir the soul of the recipient with 
a living energy. They stimulate him to noble deeds and self- 
sacrificing efforts. They compel him to act as the worthy, grate- 
ful, and appreciative possessor of so inestimable a treasure. 

" Still, I seem to hear some one say : We acknowledge this ; 
we admit the truth of what you have stated ; nevertheless, for all 
thai, you must allow that Buddhism conferred a great benefit on 
India by encouraging freedom of thought and by setting at liberty 
its teeming population, before entangled in the meshes of ceremo- 
nial observances and Brahmanical priestcraft. 

"Yes, I grant this : nay, I grant even more than this. I ad- 
mit that Buddhism conferred many other benefits on the millions 
inhabiting the most populous part of Asia. It introduced educa- 
tion and culture ; it encouraged literature and art ; it promoted 
physical, moral, and intellectual progress up to a certain point ; it 



proclaimed peace, good-will, and brotherhood among men ; it 
deprecated war between nation and nation ; it avowed sympathy 
with social liberty and freedom ; it gave back much independence 
to women ; it preached purity in thought, word, and deed (though 
only for the accumulation of merit); it taught self-denial without 
self-torture ; it inculcated generosity, charity, tolerance, love, 
self-sacrifice, and benevolence, even towards the inferior animals; 
it advocated respect for life and compassion towards all creatures ; 
it forbade avarice and the hoarding of money; and from its decla- 
ration that a man's future depended on his present acts and con- 
dition, it did good service for a time in preventing stagnation, 
stimulating exertion, promoting good works of all kinds, and ele- 
vating the character of humanity." 

If Professor Williams's conception of Christianity 
must be accepted as true Christianity, Christianity 
will pass away to make room for Buddhism. Happily, 
Christianity is a living religion, that, having passed 
through the stage of metaphysical dogmatism, is still 
possessed of the power of regeneration, so as to ap- 
proach more and more — though progress is sometimes 
slow — the ideal of a genuine catholicity. Those fea- 
tures which Professor Williams regards as the essential 
grandeur of Christianity, are a most serious defect ; 
and their absence in Buddhism indicates that it is the 
more advanced religion. That religion only which 
has overcome the pagan notions of a special revela- 
tion, of atonement through blood, of wiping out the 
past, of the miraculous power of prayer, of the ego- 
consciousness as a kind of thing-in-itself, and of a 
creation out of nothing by a God-magician, can even- 
tually become the religion of mankind. 

For myself, I must confess that I never felt more 
like a true Buddhist than after a perusal of Professor 
Williams's description of Buddhism ; for I am now 
more firmly convinced than ever, that our Church- 
Christianity can only become a scientifically true and 
logically sound religion of cosmic and universal sig- 
nificance, by being transformed into that Buddhism 
which Professor Williams refuses to regard " as a reli- 
gion in the proper sense of the word." 

Did you never read in the Scriptures, "The stone 
which the builders rejected, the same has become the 
head of the corner"? p. c. 



The proverbial ingratitude of democracies, allied to the jeal- 
ousies of the literary mutual-admiration society against eminent 
"outsiders," has been vividly illustrated in the later years of 
Gerald Massey, poet, Egyptologist, Shakesperian philosopher, and 
evangelist of the Higher Spiritualism. Hither and thither for 
Tennyson's successor the critics have cast, log-rollers have adver- 
tised their superior article, minor bards have self-consciously as- 
sisted the chorus of discussion with tongue-in-cheek : a serene 
conspiracy of silence has, all the while, concealed the very exist- 
ence of Massey from court and people. To adopt the oblique 
sneer of Rudyard Kipling, Massey "does not advertise." Yet 
many of a former generation held his singing-voice as the sweet- 
est in the land. Some observant ones held that the right of re- 

version belonged, by way of separation, to Massey when Tenny- 
son should resign his crown. The charge of plagiarism always 
singularly irritated the late Laureate. Yet, years before Tennyson 
penned three of his more famous war-songs — "The Revenge," 
"The Defence of Lucknow," and "The Charge of the Heavy 
Brigade," Massey conceived and published "Sir Richard Gren- 
ville's Last Fight," "The Relief," and " Scarlett's Three Hun- 
dred." The unique coincidence of lilt and imagery convict the 
laggard, if more eminent minstrel, of ' ' lifting " from the more ob- 
scure and original b'lrd. 

Gerald Massey was one of the pioneers of Chartism over fifty 
years backward, a colleague of the late General Trumbull whose 
pen embellished the pages of Tlie Open Court, and of George Julian 
Harney, now of the Newcastle Weekly Chronicle. Apart from his 
poems My Lyrical Life, ^ Mr. Massey is esteemed for his Secret 
Drama of Shakespeare' s Sonnets,"^ z. brilliant plea against the re- 
volting "autobiographical theory" of the sonnets, and a noble 
vindication of elevated drama against neurotic analysis. This 
" labor of love " is monumental in scheme and scope. His muse 
is universal, reaching all heads ; his interpretation of Shakespeare 
appeals to cultured students. Yet his massive claim to be counted 
on the roll of heroic speculators is unquestionable, when we con- 
sider his contributions to the profounder aspects and results of 
evolution. In four mighty volumes,^ he writes as "an evolution- 
ist for evolutionists " an attempt to recover and reconstitute the 
missing origins of myth and mystery, type and symbol, religion 
and language. In Africa he finds the birthplace, in Egypt the 
mouthpiece. He battles for evolution with original and aboriginal 
evidence rescued, whether truth or illusion, as audacious divers 
rescue portents from the perilous depths of mysterious seas. Herr 
Pietschmann with some truth said the Book of the Beginnings was 
"inspired by an unrestrained thirst for discovery "; a judgment 
which may suggest itself to all who weigh the stupendous mass of 
evidence accumulated by the author, during the dozen years of 
labor when, like Livingstone, he disappeared from public gaze. 

Roughly outlined, Mr. Massey's contentions are that the black 
race is first and emerged in Africa, swarming thence into Egypt, 
this exodus being the precursor of language, religion, literature, 
and civilisation. He is not content as Captain Burton said, to 
allow the Sanskrit edifice to fall by its own weight but rides at it 
lance at rest. Every name, tradition, symbol, observance, is in- 
geniously traced to Egyptian origin. Occasionally conclusions 
are historically startling — such, for example, as the identification 
of the Arsu ruling in the anarchic interval preceding the reign of 
Seli-Nekht with Moses. His key of Kamite typology is applied 
to type-names of places, rivers, caves, and hills in Britain, to 
demonstrate that the most ancient of these names are not Aryan 
nor Semite but are still extant in Africa. Root-words run through 
all languages, which points to unity of origin. The types and 
symbols preceding languages yet remain and the words they rep- 
resent are held as valuable in evidence as archaic coins. This 
method is enlarged into such all-embracing conclusions, as that 
the true subject-matter of various scriptures is astronomical myth- 
ology converted — or perverted — into human history. Mythology 
is the mirror of prehistoric sociology, which reflects the minutest 
details of origins : the signs of gesture-language and typical fig- 
ures, these becoming sacred in the course of time and passing into 
the fetishistic phase. In Mr. Massey's profound interpretation 
phallic foundations are disclosed with a curious and simple neces- 
sity, which subdues the " grin of the satyr in Greece, or the libid- 
inous leer of the subject in its Italian phase." The final applica- 

ITwo volumes, Kegan Paul, Trench & Co. 

2 Same publishers. 

3 Book of Beginnings and The Natural Gene. 

Williams & Norgate, pub- 



tion of the whole method to the creed of Christendom concludes 
one of the most remarkable departures of modern speculation. 

In Ten Lectures} now widely circulating, Mr. Massey in such 
subjects as " Luniolatry Ancient and Modern," and "Man in 
Search of His Soul During Fifty Thousand Years, and How He 
Found It," popularly reviews certain results of his researches and 
colors such results with ethics and humanitarian sentiments. The 
spiritualism that dawns on many pages is not the vulgar cult of 
the hired medium, but the affirmation of eternal soul against shal- 
low and now discarded materialism. These lectures, when ver- 
bally delivered, attracted cultured audiences in America, Australia, 
and England. 



" I found an altar wi 
• To the unknown G 

Know ye not Him, — the Unknown God, 

To whom ye altars raise? 

Know ye not Him ? — every phase 

Of life is attribute to Him. 

His temples are the forests dim. 
And blossoming verdure of the sod. 

Know ye not Him, whose vestures flame the sky 

In glory of the sunset's glow ? 

'Mid the shining heights of Alpine snow 

His covenant, " the everlasting hills," 

Deep-voiced with many rills. 
All Him proclaim, — the Priest most high. 

Know ye not Him ? His Written Word 

To read, nor scribe nor cabala 

From 6rst to last of nature's law. 

Who builds his faith, 'tis of his need, 

But outward upward from that need 
By growth of soul he shall know God. 

So many lives the martyr's path have trod, 
So many lives uncircumscribed by creeds, 
Who hold the burden of another's needs. 
Who Christlike bear for truth the cross. 
For honor's sake dare suffer loss, — 

These souls somewhere, some time, shall know their God. 



To the Editor of The Open Court: 

Hardly any experiment is more hopeless than to tempt me to 
enter an ex parte, prejudiced court for instruction or justice. This 
last specimen number, for instance, has the Doitcher's viev/ of 
Puritanism, as you might catch it in a beer-garden, and goes on 
to flout the early settlers of the country as if it were the common, 
est certainty that other folk at that remote day were generally 
better informed and better behaved than they. The New York 
Nation seems to me a preferable Court. J. Nelson Trash. 

New Salem, Mass. 

[How fallacious we mortals are I The article referred to by 
our correspondent is written by Dr. Felix Oswald, one of the most 
zealous advocates of total abstinence in the world ! — Ed.] 

1 Watts & Co., publishers. 


Sechs Gesange aus Dante's gottlicher Komodie. Deutsch und 
eingeleitet mit einem Versuch iiber die Anwendung der 
Alliteration bei Dante. By B. Carneri. Wien : Carl Ko- 
negen. 1896. 
Mr. B. Carneri, the well-known author of books on evolution 
and the ethical aspect of evolution, one of those few great pio- 
neers of progress who hailed Darwin and understood the import 
of his teachings before he was recognised by the world at large, 
presents us with a booklet containing six cantos of Dante's Divina 
Comedia translated into German and calling attention for the 
first time to the wonderful use which Dante made of alliteration. 
The frequency of the instances quoted by Carneri in his Preface, 
prove his theory beyond a doubt, and it shows at the same time 
the mastership of Dante, who was very far from playing with 
alliteration, but used it only as an enforcement to give additional 
strength to rhyme when emphasising certain ideas. 

As to the translation of six of the most beautiful cantos (V., 
XV., XIX., XXIII., VI., XVII.) we have to say that they will be 
welcome to many who can appreciate the delicate sense of beauty 
of the translator. No doubt there are several very good and com- 
plete German translations. But Mr. Carneri has done his work 
with much love and has been successful in avoiding all harsh 
sounds and hiatuses. His booklet is a good introduction to those 
who know little or nothing about Dante's Divina Comedia, and it 
will be considered by those who know Dante a valuable contribu- 
tion to Dante-lore. p. c. 


Messrs. Henry Holt & Co. have decided to publish an Eng- 
lish translation of Guyau's Irreligion of the Future. 



CHICAGO, ILLINOIS, Post Office Drawer F. 

E. C. HEGELER, Publisbbr. 

DR. PAUL CARUS, Editor. 



N. B. Binding Cases for single yearly volumes of Tmb Open Court will 
be supplied on order. Price, 75 cents each. 


LIAMS. Editor 4783 

GERALD MASSEY. Amos Waters 4789 


The Unknown God. Wilhelmine Darrow 4790 


The "Doitcher's" Puritanism. [With Editorial Com- 
ment.] J. Nelson Tbask 479° 


NOTES 4790 


The Open Court. 



No. 440. (Vol. X— 5.) 


[ One Dollar per Year. 
I Single Copies, 5 Cents. 

Copyright by The Open Court Publishing Co. — Reprints are permitted only on condition of giving full credit to author and publishe 



In The Open Court of January 9 an article by the 
editor appears with the above caption. I agree with 
its main line of argument touching the fanciful views 
of the writer who signs himself "Francis Jay," which 
views remind one of the doctrine of "correspond- 
ence " propounded by Swedenborg. But as I am one 
of those whom the learned Editor characterises as 
"still in the bondage of a literal belief in the Chris- 
tian dogmas," I desire to "give a reason of the hope 
that is in me " in the pages of The Open Court. I do 
so the more readily because it is an "Open Court" — 
open, I presume, to the defenders of the Christian 
faith as well as to its opponents ; and also because it 
is " devoted to the Religion of Science. " It will there- 
fore, I am sure, give place to an endeavor to show 
that "the Catholic faith," of which the Athanasian 
Quicunque speaks, is a "faith in a religion based on 
the eternal laws of existence." 

First, let one emphasise the distinction between 
"the Catholic faith" and the various theological and 
metaphysical systems deduced therefrom. ' ' The Cath- 
olic faith " is a statement of certain objective facts, 
apart from our subjective belief in them. If the al- 
leged facts are false, all our belief in them does not 
make them true ; if they are true, all our disbelief 
does not render them false. We stake the' whole 
Christian religion upon the truth of those objective 
facts, and say with St. Paul that "if Christ did not 
rise from the dead our faith is vain." (I Cor. xv., 17.) 

We Anglicans, in common with the Roman Cath- 
olic and Greek orthodox churches, contend that "the 
Holy Catholic Church " (itself an objective fact) was 
founded in order to maintain and propagate "the 
Catholic faith." Whether we are right or not in our 
contention is not now the point at issue ; I am simply 
stating the case. The Catholic faith deals with the 
two profound problems which have in all ages per- 
plexed mankind, and which remain insoluble mys- 
teries still. Those two questions are as to (i) the na- 
ture of the supreme being, and (2) the relation be- 
tween God and man. The Catholic faith meets these 
two enquiries by propounding (i) the dogma of the 
trinity, and (2) the dogma of the incarnation. The 

first of these> viz., the dogma of the trinity — with 
which we are at present solely concerned — is thus 
formulated in the Quicunque : 

" The Catholic faith is this: that we worship 
one God in trinity and trinity in unity : neither 
confounding the persons, nor dividing the sub- 
stance. . . . For like as we are compelled by 
Christian verity to acknowledge every person by 
himself to be God and Lord : so are we forbid- 
den by the Catholic religion to say, there be three 
Gods or three Lords." 
Such is the answer of the Catholic church to the 
question as to What God is. It does not solve the 
mystery of the supreme being ; it does not pretend to 
do so : that is beyond the capacity of man, and be- 
yond the realm of science as the greatest scientific 
minds have confessed. If the assertion is made : "God 
is a spirit," that does not solve the problem ; for the 
question then arises ; " What is spirit ? — Is it matter? 
— Is it pure energy? — Is it a tertium quid! " Indeed, 
argue as we may on the lines of pure reason, we shall 
inevitably find ourselves at last entangled in Kant's 
"paralogisms" and "antinomies." But the theolo- 
gian is no worse off than the philosopher in this re- 
spect. Mr. Herbert Spencer begins his grand system 
of synthetic philosophy by saying that he proposes to 
investigate the phenomena which are the manifesta- 
tions of a certain power. In his opening chapters of 
J^irst Principles he speaks most reverently of " the 
power that is manifest in the universe." At the end 
of his investigations he sums up his whole system in 
these well-known phrases, that among "all the mys- 
teries which grow the more mysterious the more they 
are thought about," we are reduced "to the one ab- 
solute certainty: the presence of an infinite and eternal 
energy from which all things proceed." 

If this is the last word of philosophy, then we may 
say that the infinite and eternal energy is philosophy's 
god. The theist, however, conceives of infinite and 
eternal energy (or power) plus infinite and eternal con- 
sciousness (or wisdom) : for the idea of a mindless 
power evolving mind (whether on this planet alone, 
or in other planets here and there throughout the uni- 
verse) is unthinkable to most of us. This infinite and 
eternal power and wisdom is acknowledged as God by 



all theists of every kind ; however "transcendental" 
or "immanent" or "anthropomorphic" their several 
concepts of God may be. 

But the Christian's idea of God goes beyond this. 
Believing (whether right or wrong is not now in ques- 
tion) that this infinite power and wisdom has made a 
certain special revelation of himself, the Christian 
learns therefrom to add the third attribute of good- 
ness. And the Catholic Christian also gathers from 
that revelation certain facts about this infinite power, 
wisdom, and goodness, which facts are embodied in 
the dogma of the trinity as formulated in the Quicunque 
as quoted above. (See also the first Thirty-nine Ar- 
ticles of the Anglican church.) 

Now I am free to confess that if this dogma is op- 
posed to scientific truth we must either give up the 
dogma or give up truth. If the authors of the Qui- 
cunque formulated " an irrational proposition which in 
contradiction of the multiplication-table made three 
equal to one " — then we must either concede that the 
alleged revelation was a false light, or we must be 
content to remain "irrational." But so far from this 
being the case, my contention is that the dogma of 
the trinity may be exhibited as "based on the eternal 
laws of existence," or in the words of Bishop Butler, 
that there is an " analogy between revealed religion 
and the constitution and course of nature." 

Let us first clear the way by explaining certain 
terms. It must be borne in mind that the words " per- 
son" and "substance" have greatly changed their 
meaning since the Quincunque was first translated into 
English. The word "substance connotes in modern 
language the idea of solidity, of material coherence ; 
we speak of a " substantial " meal, or a "substantial " 
building, but in the language of the scholastics it 
meant just the opposite. By the "substance" of a 
man they meant his "ego," his essential being. So 
the word "person" formerly signified not only an in- 
dividuality or concrete form, but also like the Latin 
persona, a presentment or phase. Indeed, in some re- 
spects the two words have changed places, as the fol- 
lowing illustration may show. 

Physiology tells us that the various particles of 
matter forming our bodies are in a constant state of 
flux, so that in the course of seven years all the ma- 
terial constituents of our bodies are renewed. Now 
suppose a young man returns to a place after an ab- 
sence of seven years. His friends might say of him : 
"This is the same person we knew formerly, but his 
substance has changed": whereas, in former times 
they would have said: "Our friend's person has 
changed, but the substance is the same." It is only 
fair to bear this in mind in our discussion. But, in- 
deed, whatever terms we use concerning the Deity — 
and what Mr. H. Spencer {Retrogressive Religion') 

terms "the All-Being" and "the Ultimate Reality" — 
must needs be inadequate. In speaking of things 
transcending human knowledge, we are forced, as Mr. 
H. Spencer says, to use " symbols," which must needs 
fall short of the reality. We simply do the best we 

In the next place, let me briefly pass in review 
some of the latest inductions of science. 

All phenomena are comprehended under two cate- 
gories, — matter and motion, — as in the famous defini- 
tion of evolution at the close of Chapter XVII. of First 
Principles. The word "motion," however, is now 
superseded by "force" or "energy." The doctrine 
of the indestructibility or persistence of matter has 
been long established. But it is only lately, compara- 
tively, that the correlative doctrine of the persistence 
of force, or conservation of energy, has been received, 
and sundry phenomena duly ranged under their proper 

Under these circumstances, I ask of modern sci- 
ence, "What is light ? " And science answers : "Light 
was formerly supposed to be a kind of subtle and im- 
palpable matter; but it is now known to be force or 
energy." I ask again : "What is heat?" and again 
science replies : " Heat, like light, was once thought 
to be a kind of matter, and as such received the name 
of caloric ; but it is now known to be force or energy." 
I ask a third time: "What is electricity?" And once 
more science replies : " Electricity, too, was till lately 
accounted as matter ; we used to speak of the electric 
'fluid,' but now that term is unscientific: for electri- 
city is not matter, not a fluid, but force or energy." 
I then inquire: "Are these three, then, one and the 
same thing?" And science says : "No! Heat is quite 
distinct from light, and light from heat, and electri- 
city from the other two : you must not cojifottnd these 
personcE." And then I say: "Since each of these is 
distinct from the others, and yet light is energy, heat 
is energy, electricity is energy — are there three ener- 
gies ? " And science answers emphatically: "No! 
There is only one energy; one infinite and eternal 
energy, from which all things proceed ! " 

Strange, this paradox, this defiance of the multi- 
plication-table ! And stranger still, that one can take 
this theological formula, which the divines of fifteen 
hundred years ago gathered out of the Book of Reve- 
lation, and by merely changing terms can convert it 
into a scientific formula which philosophers have gath- 
ered out of the Book of Nature only within the last 
score of years or so ! 

Let us see how this theological formula would read, 
mutatis mutandis, as a scientific formula relating to 
light, heat, and electricity. 

"For like as we are compelled by physical verity 
to acknowledge every persona by itself to be force or 



energy: so are we forbidden by modern science to 
say, There be three forces, or three energies." 

Now, I do not wish it to be understood that the 
God of our conception is identical with the physicist's 
energy. We do not worship blind, mechanical force : 
we do not conceive of the Supreme Being as a sort of 
automaton god. Still the analogy is very striking; an 
analogy, be it observed, undreamt of in Bishop But- 
ler's days. And so we may well argue that "the 
eternal laws of existence," as interpreted by modern 
science, instead of showing up the Athanasian formula 
as nonsensical, have served to elucidate it, and war- 
rant us in continuing "to acknowledge the glory of 
the Eternal Trinity, and in the power of the Divine 
Majesty to worship the Unity. "^ 


In COMMENT upon the Rev. Mr. Low's expositions, I 
would say that we, too, who believe in the Religion 
of Science, embrace the "catholic faith," not the Ro- 
man Catholic, nor the Greek Catholic, nor the Angli- 
can Catholic faith, but simply and purely the "catholic 
faith." Catholic is that which is universally accept- 
able, that which no one can refuse to believe ; it is ob- 
jective and undeniable truth. And what is more catho- 
lic than science ! Indeed, catholicity is the nature and 
characteristic feature of scientific statements in oppo- 
sition to mere opinion, to hypothetical assumptions, 
to unfounded speculations and theories. 

Mr. Low endorses this basic principle of the Reli- 
gion of Science, for he says : 

" I am free to confess that if this dogma [of the Trinity] is 
opposed to scientific truth we must either give up the dogma or 
give up truth." 

There is no objection to explanations of the Trin- 
ity such as are suggested by our esteemed contributor, 
but we venture to submit that there are other modes 
of energy than heat, light, and electricity. There 
is mechanical motion, and, in addition, there are the 
vital forces which appear in physiological brain and 
muscle movements, being another mode of energy 
that is quite distinct and sui generis. Thus the simile 
is inappropriate, as it may also serve to explain a four- 
fold or fivefold unity. Mr. Low, following Mr. Spen 
cer's philosophy, says : 

"All phenomena are comprehended under two categories, — 
matter and motion, — as in the famous definition of evolution at 
the close of Chapter XVII. of First Principles." 

Mr. Spencer, in the connexion referred to by Mr. 
Low, has forgotten to mention the third category, 
which is form ; and it is the omission of this third 
category which renders matter and motion mysterious 
in Mr. Spencer's philosophy. Matter, Energy, and 
Form are three disparate entities, three universals, 
and yet they form an inseparable unity; each one be- 

1 Collect for Trinity Sunday. 

ing a definite reality and yet existing only through 
and in the two others. I do not say that this is the 
meaning of the Christian Trinity, I only use it as an 
illustration of what the fathers of the Church who for- 
mulated the dogma thought by a " trinity in one. " And, 
in my opinion, this is a better explanation of the trin- 
ity of God than the enumeration of three modes of 
energy, for matter, energy, and form are exhaustive, 
as they comprise the three categories under which all 
the qualities of objective reality (not, however, the 
features of subjectivity) can be subsumed. 

I am astonished to find that Mr. Low quotes Mr. 
Spencer in support of his catholic faith, for Mr. Spen- 
cer is its most outspoken enemy. And this is the differ- 
ence between Mr. Spencer's and our opposition to the 
old faith. Mr. Spencer attacks the traditional catho- 
lic faith, because he objects as a matter of principle to 
any kind of catholicity, philosophical as well as reli- 
gious — a position which, since Huxley, goes by the 
name of agnosticism, while we reject the traditional 
catholic faith, because we regard it, if literally under- 
stood, as pseudo-catholic ; we do not deny catholicity 
as such ; we are not negative ; on the contrary, we 
uphold catholicity, and propose to preserve the stern- 
ness and definiteness of doctrine; but we attempt to 
discard the wrong metaphysics and religion, and to 
replace the symbol by a statement of facts. 

Agnosticism denies the possibility of solving the 
main problems of existence; but any one who care- 
fully and critically reads Mr. Spencer's First Principles 
will find that his agnosticism is simply due to a confu- 
sion of thought. Mr. Spencer confounds the issues of 
his arguments, and then complains about the unintel- 
ligibility of the subject. He is, however, easily com- 
forted by the idea that the problem under considera- 
tion is too profound to be grasped by mortal mind. 
Thus a boy may stir the waters of the village pond and 
then declare that its depth is unfathomable. 

We do not regard (as does Mr. Low) Mr. Spen- 
cer's philosophy as "the last word of philosophy;" 
nor can we grant that the question, " What is spirit ? " 
is unanswerable, and that "argue as we may on the 
lines of pure reason, we shall inevitably find ourselves 
at last entangled in Kant's 'paralogisms' and 'anti- 
nomies.'" This, indeed, is exactly the work of The 
Open Court, to proclaim a new line of thought, which 
will supersede both the old dogmatism and the more 
modern agnosticism by propounding a new orthodoxy, 
which is the orthodoxy of provable truth. There is 
no true Catholicism except the Catholicism of science. 
Science is an exact and objective formulation of truth, 
and truth is the rock of ages upon which our religion 
must be built. ^ p. c. 

IThe various problems touched upon in the present article ha 
peatedly treated in The Open Court. On the nature of soul, mine 




Never has the editorial management of The Open 
Court been more severely criticised than during the 
last fortnight. We are in receipt of a number of let- 
ters which, although written in a friendly spirit, unan- 
imously condemn the publication of Mr. Moncure D. 
Conways's article "Our Cleveland Christmas." This 
very storm of indignation is to us the best evidence 
that the public upholds the President in his policy. 
And even such men as ex-Governor G. Koerner, who 
like Professor von Hoist rejects the Monroe Doctrine, 
would not countenance Mr. Conway's propositions. 
As to the non-admittance of articles which present 
ideas that in our opinion are utterly wrong and of- 
fensive, I beg to differ with our friends. I believe 
that it is always best to let everybody speak out plainly 
what he believes. We may feel indignant when other 
people passionately express views that hurt our most 
sacred beliefs or dearest national ideals, or, even con- 
tain personal insults, but we must remember that so 
long as we cannot listen to a passionate argument with 
patience, the illusion of selfhood is still upon us and 
we cannot as yet be judges in our own case. 

We offer here a selection of expressions on the 
Monroe Doctrine, and at the risk of offending our pa- 
triotic readers again, we open our symposium with 
an unabridged communication from Mr. W. D. Light- 
hall of Montreal, representing a Canadian view of the 
question. Undoubtedly he says many things which 
will tempt many of our readers to take pen in hand 
for a reply, but I would suggest that not every argu- 
ment need be answered, nor is it necessary to refute 
every one-sided or otherwise erroneous statement. I 
request our readers to look upon Mr. Lighthall's com- 
munication more as an expression of views that are 
held beyond our boundary line to the North than as a 
challenge for controversy.' It is always wise to keep 
informed about the views which large classes of people 
hold ; for convictions are facts that have to be reck- 
oned with in life. 

The View of a Canadian. 

In the article on " New Weapons of the United States Army" 
in last February's Century, the closing paragraph opens: "It is 
absolutely certain that the practice which has existed in this coun- 
try of waiting for a declaration of hostilities before inaugurating 
defensive and offensive preparations can no longer be followed. 
' IVe defeated England twice and we can do it again ' is an oft-repeated 
boast that creates a pleasant tinkle in our ears. ..." That this ac- 
count of a boast and a desire is an accurate statement of a feeling 

see the article, What Is Mind ? [Soul o/ Man, pp. 23-2+). For the statement 
that energy (be it scrutable or inscrutable) cannot be regarded as God, see 
The Open Court, No. 212, p. 2757, in a discussion of Professor Haecltel's reli- 
gious conceptions. For a criticism of First Principles, see the editorial 
" Spencerian Agnosticism," in No. 212, p. 2951. Compare also the articles, 
"Are There Things in Themselves" and "The Metaphysical x in Cognition " 
(The Ironist, Vol. II., No. 2, p. 225, and Vol, V., No. 4, p. 510), 

1 We restrict our reply to Mr. Lighthall to the statement that it is not true 
that " the Union Jacii never appears on an American street without insult." 

in the average American breast has been proved by the recent 
outbreak of "the Cleveland war."^ Concerning the feeling in 
question therefore, I trust the words I say, as a descendant of 
men who rendered unquestionable services during both the Revo- 
lution and 1812, will be recognised as necessary reflexions of a 
plain-speaking friend, and that the ozone in them will not be un- 
acceptable to those who honestly desire a reasoned patriotism. 
What is the origin of this intense desire, then, to "defeat Eng- 
land," a nation profoundly friendly ? Why is it that while the 
American flag can be, and has been, carried from one end to the 
other of the British Isles with acclamations, the Union Jack never 
appears on an American street without insult ? From long in- 
quiry on the subject I have come to the conclusion that it is a result 
of the manner in which popular and school-accounts of the Revolu- 
tion are written. To that period of course the national pride rightly 
looks back as the epoch of the origin of American liberty. But in 
what antiquated and laughable forms is it dressed I A critical 
school of American history exists, but Justin Winsor, Mellen 
Chamberlain, Moses Coit Tyler and their like are too slow for 
these dime writers. "The British " of those days figure as a par- 
allel to the Pawnees of the other branch of popular literature — a 
race of red-coated instead of red-skinned brutes and pusillanimous 
cowards : " the British " of to-day are pictured as still unchanged 
in melodramatic characteristic and institutions, and still preoccu- 
pied with, not the management of the affairs of their fourth of the 
human race, but with designs of ' ' descending on New York " 
and reimposing "monarchy " on this continent ; the liberal party, 
" that brilliant band of the friends of liberty " as they have been 
called, who in Parliament fought for the cause of the colonists as 
being one with that of the British masses, are included as indis- 
criminately in the condemnation together with all their actual and 
spiritual descendants ; no " Tory " is allowed a conscience or an 
argument still less a regret in his confiscations and exiles ; every 
patriot was a white-headed boy — a full-fledged Patrick Henry, a 
Paul Revere, and also a Buffalo Bill ; — and every "patriot" of 
to-day is a descendant who inherits their wrongs, their glories, and 
their prowess. Is this an overstatement, I ask of any candid man? 
The form may vary, but the substance at least is what all my good 
little cousins were brought up upon. 

Now two serious dangers exist in the state of things which 
such an education produces. One is the external danger of bring- 
ing upon the country the sufferings of a criminal war. Those who 
have made a study of the original facts of 1776 and 1812 know a 
little of what that means — and they know that "the oft-repeated 
boast " above mentioned, is a boast without foundation. In the 
war of 1775 the patriots did not " defeat England " in any such 
sense as to flatter vanity. The conclusive testimony of Washing- 
ton was that "night does not more surely follow day " than that 
without the immediate aid of France, the cause was lost. In 1812 
the war proclaimed by Madison, was, like the Cleveland one, for 
political effect. As everybody knew at the time, its actual object 
was the conquest of Canada, whose handful of inhabitants it was 
thought were defenceless while England was fighting Napoleon 
for the liberties of the world. The war ignominiously failed in 
Canada. American sea commerce was totally destroyed. Wash- 
ington was captured. Several American armies and generals were 
taken. And the number of American prisoners was enormously 
greater than that of their opponents. Conveniently ignoring these 
trifling details, the Jingo historians, inheriting their facts from the 
Wooden Nutmeg Age, have clothed it with some sort of glory as 
" the Naval War" on account of about a dozen victories of ship 
over ship. Unfortunately common sense insists on pursuing the 

IThe protests of innumerable leading persons in favor of moderation and 
good-feeling have, it is true, shown that the best brains and hearts are for the 
most part exceptions but they are obviously a minority and more or less ahead 
of the generation as a whole. 



inquiry deeper, and a table of guns, crews, and tonnage of the 
vessels concerned shows that these victories were due to the sim- 
ple policy of building larger ships and equipping them with from 
a third again to twice, the number of crew and weight of metal. 

The truth was — and here is the second and greatest danger, 
the internal one — that the war of 1812, unlike that of 1776, was a 
mean war, entered into from no sober thought nor high moral mo- 
tive. Armies cannot stand up to defend frippery reasons against 
men fighting sternly for their homes and consciences. The same 
principle applies most seriously to the welding of a nation situated 
like the United States. Citizens whose ideal of nationality is an 
antiquated hatred or any other outcome of a history built upon 
vanity, illiberality, and the idea that impatience is freedom and 
rashness courage, are not the right cement for the huge regions 
and stirring elements of the republic. Habits cannot be confined 
to one set of actions. Readiness to rush into wars grows on the 
same bough as readiness to rush into rebellions : covetousness of 
foreign territory is the same appetite as covetousness by one class 
of the rights of another ; political recklessness must produce not 
one but many political disorders ; unfairness on the outside means 
'ike unfairness within ; and the refusal to study history soberly 
must result in heavy losses in the making of history. Surely re- 
cent events have shown that this question of common-sense edu- 
cation in history is worthy of the careful attention of all, and par- 
ticularly of the national patriot, who ought to hold the same 
principles in all countries. 

Montreal. W. D. Lighthall. 

The View of English Authors. 

. . . The present is neither the time nor the place, nor are we 
the persons to deal with ths crisis on its technical issues, but it 
should not be difficult for any of us as men and women of reading 
and imagination, not liable to be carried away by political pas- 
sion, to understand the general bearings of the case on both sides. 
We, on our part, are prepared to understand that the United 
States, as the greatest nation in America, looks with proper jeal- 
ousy on the extension of European powers of influence and terri- 
tory on the American continent. And you, on your part, will not 
fail to realise that European powers in general, and Great Britain 
in particular, have never made any effort to enlarge their domin- 
ions on your continent at any time within the past hundred years. 

There is no anti-American feeling among Englishmen, and it 
is impossible that there can be any anti-English feeling among 
Americans. For two such nations, then, to take up arms against 
each other would be civil war, not differing from your calamitous 
struggle of thirty years ago, except that the cause would be im- 
measurably less human, less tragic, and less inevitable. 

We ask you to join us in helping to protect that future. Poets 
and creators, scholars and philosophers, men and women of im- 
agination and of vision, we call upon you in the exercise of your 
far-reaching influence, to save our literature from dishonor, and 
our race from lasting injury. — Extracts from a circular of the So- 
ciety of Authors, 4 Portugal Street, Lincoln's Inn Fields, Lon- 
don, W. C. 

Thomas Jefferson's Letter to Mr, Rush. 

[Here reproduced at the suggestion of E. P. Powell 
of Clinton, N. Y.] 

' ' Our first and fundamental maxim should be never to entangle 
ourselves in the broils of Europe. Our second never to suffer 
Europe to intermeddle with Cis-Atlantic affairs. America, North 
and South, has a settled interest distinct from those of Europe, 
and peculiarly her own. She should therefore have a system of 
her own. While Europe is laboring to become the domicile of 
despotism, our endeavor should be to make our hemisphere that 
of freedom. One nation most of all could disturb us in this pur- 

suit. She now offers to lead, aid, and accompany us in it. By 
acceding to her proposition we detach her from the band of des- 
pots, bring her mighty weight into the scale of free government, 
and emancipate a continent at one stroke. Great Britain is the 
nation which can do us the most harm of any one or all on earth, 
and with her on our side we need not fear the whole world. With 
her then we should most sedulously cherish a cordial friendship ; 
and nothing would tend more to knit our affections than to be 
fighting once more side by side in the same cause. Not that I 
would purchase even her amity at the price of taking part in her 
wars. But the war in which the present proposition might engage 
us, should that be its consequence, is not her war but ours. Its 
object is to introduce and establish the American system of keep- 
ing out of our land all foreign powers ; of never permitting those 
of Europe to intermeddle with the affairs of our nation. But I 
am clearly of Mr. Canning's opinion that this will prevent war in- 
stead of provoking it. Nor is the occasion to be slighted which 
this proposition offers of declaring our protest against the atro- 
cious violations of the rights of nations by the interference of any- 
one in the internal affairs of another, so flagitiously begun by 
Bonaparte, and now continued by the equally lawless Alliance 
calling itself Holy. 

' ' But we have first to ask ourselves a question. Do we wish to 
acquire to our own Confederacy any one or more of the Spanish 
provinces ? I candidly confess that I have ever looked on Cuba 
as the most interesting addition which could ever be made to our 
system of States. The control which, with Florida Point, this is- 
land would give us over the Gulf of Mexico and the countries bor. 
dering on it as well as all those whose waters flow into it would 
fill up the measure of our political well-being. Yet as I am sensi- 
ble that this can never be obtained, even with her own consent, 
without war ; and its independence, which is our second interest, 
can be secured without it, I have no hesitation in abandoning my 
first wish to future chances, and accepting its independence with 
peace and the friendship of England, rather than its association 
at the expense of war and her enmity. 

"I could honestly, therefore, join in the declaration proposed, 
that we aim not at the acquisition of any of those possessions ; 
that we will not stand in the way of any amicable arrangement 
between them and the mother country. But that we will oppose 
with all our means the forcible interposition of any other powers, 
as auxiliary, stipendiary, or under any other form or pretext, and 
most especially their transfer to any power by conquest, cession, 
or acquisition in any other way. I should think it therefore ad- 
visable that the executive should encourage the British govern- 
ment to a continuance in the dispositions expressed in these let- 
ters by an assurance of his concurrence with them as far as his 
authority goes. Jefferson." 

E. P. Powell's Comments on Jefferson's Letter. 

Here [in Thomas Jefferson's letter] we see clearly (i) that 
the proposition to create territorial stability on the American con- 
tinents was of English origin ; (2) that it recognised the status quo 
as permanent — except by the voice of the people of any State. (3) 
That it not only debarred the Holy Alliance from forcible inter- 
ference ; but it bound England and the United States to make no 
aggressions on their neighbors. (4) It was recognised as an ad- 
vance in general international law ; and we know that as such it 
not only settled the affairs of America but of Europe. From that 
date national aggression was held to be an international grievance, 
and has rarely occurred. (5) It was considered a movement in the 
behalf of peace, and not of war; and so it operated. It was a 
distinct alliance of the most stable elements of civilisation to hold 
the rest in restraint. (6) It did not in any way concern the settle- 
ment of boundaries ; for the boundaries of South American States 
have never been fixable beyond question, except when rivers drew 



the lines. Our own boundaries with Great Britain have been in 
dispute, and have been settled not quite to the satisfaction of 
either party. 

Perfectly defined and absolutely distinct as the "American 
System " was, as the ' ' Monroe Doctrine " it became in after years 
a very misty affair in the minds of the people. It reappeared as 
an excuse for the filibustering excursions of the Fifties. Pollard 
argued that "the object as well as the intention of the enforce- 
ment of the Monroe Doctrine in Central America would but be 
the legitimate one of a reversion of that country to its natural 
destiny. . . . We are sworn by a solemn declaration of policy and 
by the eternal oath of American liberty. One step towards the 
accomplishment of this destiny, one advance toward the rearing 
of that great southern empire, whose seat is eventually to be in 
Central America, and whose boundaries are to enclose the Gulf of 
Mexico, was the memorable expedition of William Walker to Ni- 
caragua. It was to found in a glorious land of promise the insti- 
tutions of the South, to extend them to other inviting countries of 
Spanish America, and on the doubly secured foundation of those 
institutions and of military ideas of government to build up the 
great tropical empire of America. " A policy of peace and non- 
aggression was thus expounded into a policy of aggression and 
territorial enlargement. 

The application of historic facts to the present relations of 
the United States and Great Britain is easily made by every 
reader. If it be our duty to establish an American protectorate 
over the two American continents the policy is our own, and 
should be weighed as such. It does not devolve upon us as a duty 
from any principle enunciated by Canning and Jefferson, or any 
position assumed by Monroe and Adams. 

The Memorial of the Representatives of the Religious Society of Friends. 

To the President of the United States : 

We have participated with many others of our fellow-citizens 
in anxiety and regret at the threatened disturbance of amicable 
relations between our government and that of Great Britain, rela- 
tive to the boundary dispute between the latter and Venezuela in 
South America. The efforts made by the Executive and Cabinet 
of the United States for months past to induce Great Britain to 
refer this question to arbitration meets with our cordial approba- 
tion and sympathy. We believe this is the true and Christian 
solution of all differences that may arise between either individ- 
uals or nations. . . . But we think our Government is liable to lose 
the firm ground thus assumed in its peaceful intervention between 
the contending parties by holding out a menace against one of 
them, that in case she did not accept our good offices in the mode 
we had prescribed, the United States would "resist by every 
means in its power, etc.". . . Wars, in many instances, owe their 
origin more to the offended pride of rulers on trivial occasions 
than to the invasion of the just rights or property of the comba- 
tants. . . . We feel that any occasion should be carefully avoided 
which might kindle the flames of animosity between two of the 
foremost nations of the globe, who are bound to each other by the 
ties of a common language and race, commercial intercourse, and 
Christian civilisation. 

Signed by direction and on behalf of a meeting of the afore- 
said representatives held in Philadelphia on the third day of the 
First month, 1896. Joseph Walton, C/erk. 

A Letter from a Subscriber. 

A strong impression rests on me that you made a mistake in 
admitting Mr. Conway's political screed, " Our Cleveland Christ- 
mas, "into The Open Court. A delightful writer on many sub- 
jects ; but like preachers generally, when they undertake to treat 
on political subjects, they expose the weak places in their make- 
up and talk nonsense. Such a paper as this is as much out of 

place in a journal like The Open Court as garlic would be in a 
Charlotte Russe. 

I always open my copy as soon as I reach my "den" after 
its arrival, and read everything in it without rising. Thence, 
through the week, occasional references give me the full flavor of 
all in it. Such an article as this of Conway's comes in like a 
crashing continuous discord in the rendering of a musical gem by 
a perfect orchestra or performer. If he will read Justin McCar- 
thy's History of Our Own Times, since the accession of Victoria, 
he will find enough in the conduct of his beloved England to make 
him taste gall, without villifying the American executive. Only 
the spirit of long patience can forgive him for writing and sending 
such an article to you. Your able review of the matter and caus- 
tic rebuke of him does credit to your head and heart ; but unless 
you intend to turn T!ie Open Court into a journal on national eco- 
nomics, there should have been no occasion for your reply, which 
hardly compensates for the admission of the article. ... It is like 
profanity in a funeral sermon. You may have readers who will 
be in sympathy with it as to matter, time, and place ; but scien- 
tific searchers after ultimate truths cannot be, and I think it will 
be unpleasant to many and acceptable to few. However, I will 
speak only for myself, on whom it jars with a painful sense of 
impropriety and injustice. 

My great regard for you and admiration of your earnest and 
able work — grown into a feeling of friendship, although I never 
saw you — impels me to speak as I feel, but wholly in kindness. 
C. H. Reeve, 

Dean Craik's Opinion. 

Christ Church Cathedral, Louisville, Ky. 
To the Editor of The Open Court : 

The admission into the columns of an American paper of an 
article so unfair, so partisan, and in truth so disloyal as that by 
Moncure D. Conway, in your issue of January 16, is entirely too 
much of an " Open Court " for me, and I return your subscription 
blank unsigned. 

Even the temperate, fair, and just discussion of the same 
question by Prof. E. D. Cope, and your own repudiation of Mr. 
Conway's sentiments do not entirely clear you, in my judgment. 
Truly yours, C. E. Craik, Dean. 

Prom an Octogenarian. 

To the Editor of the Open Court: 

I write to thank you for your remarks upon "our mutual 
friend" M. D. Conway's "Our Cleveland Christmas." Like your- 
self I could not agree with Conway. You wrote as one to the 
manor born, while he as one that had forgotten that he was an 
American citizen. I cannot, however, but think that his criticisms 
are in some measure just — but, as I have said, I think you wrote 
wisely and well. 

In all probability I shall not be able to read your paper many 
years longer, having passed my "Three score and twenty-two" 
years of life. Yet hope while I do live and possess my mental fac- 
ulties, that I may have the privilege of reading the paper. 

I trust you will excuse me for writing to you — I could not help 
doing so. Wishing you every success, I am sincerely yours, 

M. G. White. 

Remarks from Ex*Qovernor Koerner. 

Conway's article does not touch the real question, and his 
criticism of our institutions goes too far. But yet it cannot be 
well answered, when he denounces our system, by saying to Eng- 
land "You are another." 

The only sensible article on the Monroe Doctrine is yours. 
But in your article there is, in my opinion, some misapprehension 
in regard to public opinion here. Nine hundred and ninety-nine 



out o£ a thousand of our even intelligent people know nothing 
about the Monroe Doctrine. 

I still consider it a duty to insist on a correct interpretation 
of the Monroe Doctrine. The Monroe Doctrine has not been fol- 
lowed all along. Just the contrary. Seward asked the French to 
withdraw, but based it by no means on the Monroe Doctrine, 
which he almost repudiated in his dispatch to Motley, and in a 
dispatch to me, when I was Minister to Spain, which I will take 
occasion to publish. 

As Mr. Oilman of Hopkins University is one of the Commis- 
sion, I have read carefully what he says about the Doctrine to 
some extent, in his biography of Monroe, written in 1883, He is 
mistaken in many respects, and as this is quite important, I may 
write an article for The Open Court on that subject. 


[The article referred to has been written and will appear in 
the next Open Court , — Ed.] 

The editorial position on the Monroe Doctrine has 
been sufficiently stated in No. 338 of The Open Court. 

p. c. 



Theism as a Science, by the Rev. Charles Voysey, B. A., 
Minister of the Theistic Church in Swallow Street, Piccadilly, is a 
book published by Williams & Norgate, London. Its author some 
thirty years back was an interesting personality in the movement 
of religious liberalism. The Vicar of Healaugh, a Yorkshire vil- 
lage, he was, nevertheless, exercising the minds of the orthodox 
throughout the land with a series of volumes entitled The Sling 
and the Stone, which embodied the best results of criticism in re- 
lation to revelation. The sensation caused by these publications 
was pronounced and led to the famous heresy trial at York in 
1859, when the ecclesiastical tribunal pronounced for the expul- 
sion of the intrepid enthusiast. Mr. Voysey preached his farewell 
sermon to his weeping flock on the vicarage lawn, the church- 
doors being locked against him. An appeal to the Privy Council 
in 1870 was unavailing. Then it was that great things were ex- 
pected of him. The promise was unfulfilled. Mr. Voysey now 
ministers to a small and select congregation who accept his de- 
liverances as papal oracles, and bis occasional volumes are dis- 
cussed because of his interesting past. One secret of his failure 
has been in his jealousy of science, and his petulant ignoring of 
philosophy. His theism is personal and dogmatic with no aid 
from, or appeal to, the revelation of science. 

Theism as a Science aflSrms the science of God. Reason, con- 
science, and love are held to unite in admission of evidence of one 
"superhuman Being ruling and ordering the complex forces of 
nature," who sits supreme as Lord and Governor of the universe. 
The argument of design is claimed to prove that mind and intelli- 
gence exist and work apart from, and independently of the human 
brain. The contemplation of a tree by a man leads up to the con- 
viction that, as here are two different organisations, one higher 
because of intellect, emotion, and locomotion than the other, yet 
unable to create that other, so there an eye of mightier contem- 
plation than the eye of man, an intellect and will transcending the 
human in greater measure than man is superior to the tree. 

The argument from conscience is eloquently stated — "that 
voice which hushes our cry for pleasure, which will not endure a 
single selfish plea, but demands unquestioning obedience, and bids 
us fall down in the very dust before the Majesty of Duty — that 
voice, I say, we all in our secret hearts revere, whether or not we 
obey it as we should. At least we pay to it the homage of our in- 
most souls, and feel how great and grand it is to be its slave " 
(p. 54). Conscience, Mr. Voysey proceeds, conscience is the reve- 

lation 0/ what God ts — for this power which compels a deliberate 
self-surrender brings us face to face with a Power which is abso- 
lutely transcendent overall nature, and reveals to our mind the ex- 
istence of a spiritual world in and around us, to which the laws and 
forces of the visible world are subordinate. 

Next Mr. Voysey deals with the mystery of evil — of death, 
pain, and sin, and appeals to our ignorance of the final purpose of 
God by way of reconciling evil with infinite love. Having sketched 
the plan of his reasoning we leave his book with a tinge of lament. 
Too much preaching — too little philosophy, else Charles Voysey 
would have been a fascinating and powerful influence in the coun- 
cils of cultured liberalism. 

In The Ethical Problem'^ Dr.'P \vi.C^.TLVS fine\y S3.ys: "There 
are sometimes dark moments in our lives when we do not know 
how to decide, and the decision as to what is right and proper may 
be very difficult. In such moments we should soar above the nar- 
rowness of the present life and look down upon our own fate from 
the higher standpoint of eternity. Let us in such moments im- 
agine we had died ; that we are no more, and that our lives have 
long been ended. While our bodies rest in the grave, our deeds, 
our thoughts, our words continue to influence humanity. The 
idea of eternal rest will calm our passions and soothe our anxie- 
ties. When such peace comes over our soul, then let us confess 
to ourselves what we wish we had done while alive" (p. 63). 

This passage in its philosophy singularly anticipates a kindred 
deliverance in College Sermons''- by Dr. Jowett, the late beloved 
Master of Balliol, only just published : 

"The considerations which have been placed before you in 
this sermon relate chiefly to our earthly life, and yet they may re- 
ceive correction and enlargement from the thought of another. 
For there is an eternal element even in worldly success, when, 
amid all the rivalries of this world, a man has sought to live ac- 
cording to the will of God, and not according to the opinion of 
men. Whatever there was of justice, or purity, or disinterestedness 
in him, or Christlike virtue, or resignation, or love of the truth, 
shall never pass away. When a man feels that earthly rewards 
are but for a moment, and that his true self and true life have yet 
to appear : when he recognises that the education of the individual 
beginning here is continued hereafter, and, like the education of 
the human race, is ever going on : when he is conscious that he is 
part of a whole, and himself and all other creatures are in the 
hands of God ; then his mind may be at rest : he has nothing more 
to fear : he has attained to peace and is equally fit to live or die." 

In the person of Jowett saint and sceptic equally contended, 
and the literature now accumulating around his name and revered 
memory remarkably proves that the fervor of the new faith hap- 
pily combines with the enthusiasm of the old morality to humanly 
attract all cultured souls. In Mr. Lionel Tollemache's sketch of 
Benjamin Jowett ^ we are advised that Jowett once said of an or- 
thodox apologist, " He is trying to pitch the standard of belief too 
high for the present age." In morality and ethics Jowett appealed 
to the age between its spirit of discordant incredulity and its re- 
membered love of the spiritual. But no sooner had he convinced 
his pupils that success was desirable, than he disturbed that con- 
viction with sceptical questioning, which led up to the loftier out- 
look visioned by himself and Dr. Cams in the passages quoted 
above. Thus the saint evolved from the sceptic. The balanced 
fascination of these two influences accounts largely for the love of 
those who knew him not, while the beauty of his soul, the power 
of his intellect, the brilliance of his wit, and his magnetic personal 
charm have made of his friends and pupils worshippers even when 
not disciples. 

IThe Open Court Publishing Company. 
2John Murray, publisher. 
3 Edward Arnold, publisher. 



It was natural, after years of excessive praise, that the voices 
of reaction should assail the genius of George Eliot. But the 
current republications of her works' is a confounding answer to 
the detractors. More ardent in critical scepticism and with an 
austere silence anent the primal and ultimate problems of life 
that was impossible to Jowett, George Eliot was yet the greater 
pleading influence for imperious laws of conduct. In a memora- 
ble passage Mr. R. H. Hutton tells how she once on the night of 
a rainy June at Oxford, passionately insisted how inconceivable 
was God, yet how peremptory and absolute was duty. Like a 
shining Sibyl in the gloom she withdrew the two scrolls of prom- 
ise, leaving the third only awful with inevitable fate. 

Yet in the higher if not in the vulgar sense, George Eliot pro- 
claimed immortality as insistently as the devoutest exponent of 
monism. Witness her aspiration to "join the choir invisible of 
those immortal dead who live again in minds made better by their 
presence." Her scorn 

" For miserable aims that end in self," 
and her rejoicing 

*' In thoughts sublime that pierce the night like stars, 
And with their mild persistence urge man's search 
To vaster issues," 
imply the motto of Gustav Freytag's The Lost Manuscript," \. e., 
"A tioble human life does not end on earth. It continues in the minds 
and deeds of friends, as well as in the thoughts and the activity of the 
nation." And her reverence for every form of religion implies an 
underlying recognition of the Supreme but Impersonal Ideal, the 
God of scientific revelation acknowledged of monism and reverent 

The new edition of her works has provoked Mrs. E. Lynn 
Linton to characteristic and jealous depreciation. According to the 
lesser, the greater woman was ' ' so consciously ' George Eliot ' — so 
interpenetrated head and heel, inside and out, with the sense of 
her importance as the great novelist and profound thinker of her 
generation, as to make her society a little overwhelming, leaving 
on baser creatures the impression of having been rolled very flat 

Mr. T. H. Escott, M.A. — until recently editor of the Fort- 
nightly Review — in a volume of reminiscences entitled Platform, 
Press, and Politics,^ amusingly sketches the order of procedure for 
visitors to the shrine of George Eliot : 

"The etiquette dominating the premises sacred to her who 
wrote Adam Bede, and to him who tried to popularise Comte, was 
overpoweringly severe. The positivist himself, with an air of 
worshipping proprietorship, met his guests on the threshold, and 
with something between a nod and a sigh signified that here a hat 
might be left, there an umbrella deposited ; or that yonder was a 
vase for receiving the votive flowers sacred to the goddess, which 
visitors often brought. Inside the chamber wherein She sat, a 
space was marked off, behind which the neophytes were not per- 
mitted to go. Initiated bystanders informed those resorting for 
the first time to the shrine, that only after probationary years 
could the rite of presentation, if ever, arrive. Pigott, the house- 
hold's ' tame cat,' had of course long enjoyed this privilege. To a 
percentage of candidates it never came at all. Though they had 
seen the Sybil in her splendor, they were not permitted by her 
possessor to touch her garment's hem." 



To the Editor of The Open Court : 

The article in The Open Court of January 9 upon " The Holy 
Spirit, the Female of the Godhead," is interesting, as the editor 

1 Messrs. Blackwood, publishers. SOpen Court Publishing Company. 

3 The Woman at Home, September, 1895. ^ J. W. Arrowsmitb, publisher. 

notes, in showing how we are constantly reverting to old methods 
in working out our theological problems, though it be uncon- 
sciously. This idea of the Trinity is older than Christian theol- 
ogy. Philo, who was a Jew of Alexandria, born 20-10 B. C, 
makes use of exactly this conception in treating of the nature of 
the Deity. Long before his time it was common among Jewish 
writers to speak of God as a Father, the Father of men and of the 
world. (Isaiah, Ixiii., 16; Ixiv., 8.) In Job and in Proverbs and 
still more fully in Ecclesiasticus, and Wisdom, the wisdom of God 
is spoken of as a person distinct from God, and is always spoken 
of as a female, aoi^ia the Greek term for wisdom being femi- 
nine in gender. Philo carried this idea further. He not only 
speaks of God as the Father of the world, but he expands the 
metaphor of Fatherhood into that of a marriage. He conceives 
God as the Father and His Wisdom as the Mother, and says : 
"And she, receiving the seed of God, with fruitful birth-pangs 
brought forth this world, His visible Son, only and well beloved." 
How far Philo owes his thought to Jewish sources, and how 
far to the conceptions of Greek philosophy, of which he was a 
student, I am unable to say. This conception of the Godhead 
was not uncommon in the time of early Christianity, and is to be 
found in some of the gnostic schools. While Philo used this tri- 
une metaphor, he was not a trinitarian ; but it is evident that such 
expressions and conceptions paved the way for the subsequent 
trinitarianism of the Christian Church. However fast one may 
hold the dogma of the Trinity today, a study of the history of 
human thought shows it to be a development of one of the many 
attempts to explain the creation of the world, the presence of evil, 
and human redemption. R. F. Johonnot. 



CHICAGO, ILLINOIS, Post Office Drawer f. 

E. C. HEGELER, Publisher. 

DR. PAUL CARUS, Editoi. 


$1.00 PER YEAR. $0.50 FOR SIX MONTHS. 



J. Low 4791 

ENCE. Editor 4793 


The View of a Canadian. W. D. Lighthall 4794 

Thomas Jefferson's Letter to Mr. Rush. [With Com- 
ments.] E. P. Powell 4795 

The Memorial of the Representatives of the Religious 

Society of Friends 4796 

A Letter from a Subscriber. C. H. Reeve 4796 

Dean Craik's Opinion 4796 

From an Octogenarian. M. G, White 4796 

Remarks from Ex-Governor Koerner 4796 



"The Holy Spirit, the Female of the Godhead." R. F. 
Johonnot 4798 


The Open Court. 



No. 441. (Vol. X.-6.) 


Copyright by The Open Court Publishing Co. — Reprints are permitted only ( 

ndition of giving full credit to author and publisher. 


Professor Roentgen's Discovery. 


We have just received from Professor Schubert, 
mathematician and physicist, of Hamburg, Germany, 
a remarkably fine photograph of the interior of a living 
hand, showing the exact outlines and processes of 
the different parts of the skeleton. This hand was 
photographed by means of the new actinic or fluo- 
rescence-producing rays whose power of penetrating 
opaque substances was discovered a few weeks ago 
by Professor Rontgen of Wiirtzburg, or, since we have 
as yet no precise knowledge of their character, by 
means of what may be called the new A--rays. This 
term was used by Professor Rontgen himself, to ex- 
press the unknown character of the new physical 
agent. With regard to the mechanical execution of the 
picture. Professor Schubert is justly proud that the 
members of the Hamburg laboratory have succeeded 
better than Professor Rontgen himself. 

The hand in question, which the readers will find 
reproduced in the Supplement to this number, was 
photographed upon a plate enclosed in a small, flat 
photographer's box — the hand being held in front of 
the source from which the .r-rays were emitted. Un- 
like the ordinary rays of light, the new .r-rays in pass- 
ing into new media are not refracted, that is bent aside 
from their course, but continue their way by rectilinear 
paths. They are, however, absorbed in varying de- 
grees by different substances, and some opaque bodies 
are more transparent to them than others. Thus, in the 
cut in question it will be seen that the rays have passed 
through the fleshy parts of the hand but have been ob- 
structed by the bony parts, and still more so by the 
ring which is plainly visible as a dark object encircling 
the engagement-finger. What are really photographed, 
therefore, are the shadows cast by the objects which 
the new rays strike. (We say "photographed," but 
we should say " x-e.d.." Professor Schubert speaks, 
in his letter to the editor of The Open Court, of the 
new things they are now a:-ing in Hamburg.) The 
shadows are allowed to repose for a considerable length 
of time upon the ordinary dry plates of the photogra- 
pher, and are then developed and fixed in the usual 

manner. The wooden cover of the cassette, which pro- 
tects the dry plate from the influence of the light, need 
not be removed in the new photography or -ir-igraphy, 
for Rontgen's x-rays pass unhindered through wood. 
Furthermore, no covering can protect the dry plates 
from the effects of the x-rays. To be protected they 
must be placed without the range of influence of the 

All substances are penetrable to Rontgen's rays, 
none are opaque to them ; and in this quality rests 
the essence of the difference between the results of 
the new photography and those of the old. The pho- 
tograph of a metal plate taken by Rontgen's rays dis- 
tinctly shows all the bubbles, faults, and deformities 
which have been produced in its interior by casting or 
rolling. Generally, the surface of the body is not 
photographed, but only the denser parts in the inte- 
rior, which are less transparent to Rontgen's rays. A 
photograph of a case containing a set of weights shows 
distinctly every brass piece constituting the set. The 
spirals and twists of a wire enclosed in a wooden box 
are exactly reproduced. Professor Schubert of Ham- 
burg writes that they are successfully reproducing 
the contents of valises and travelling boxes. The 
figures and markings on the face of a compass in a 
closed metal box have been photographed with beau- 
tiful distinctness, although writing and printers' ink 
generally is very transparent to the rays, that is, 
throws no shadows, and, consequently, by an almost 
providential interposition in behalf of the peace and 
domestic security of the world, writing in a closed en- 
velope cannot be photographed by the new physical 
agent. The range of application of the new method 
in surgery is evident, yet when we reflect on the stu- 
pendous results to which less significant discoveries 
have led, the impossibility of forecasting its effects in 
all practical and technical spheres will be obvious. 
And it may have in its way a no less important bearing 
on theory. 

The facts constituting Rontgen's experiment and 
discovery, for the details of which we are indebted to 
an able article by Prof. L. Holtzmann in the Weser- 
Zeitung, are briefly as follows. 

A long time ago Geissler and Gassiot had con- 
structed closed tubes filled with rarefied gases, in the 



ends of which platinum wires (electrodes) were sol- 
dered. In Germany these tubes are called Geissler's 
tubes. If the two platinum wires be connected to the 
poles of an induction-coil with sufficiently high differ- 
ences of potential, the electricity will disrupt the gas 
and produce the familiar luminous phenomena. 

Afterwards, Professor Hittorf attached to the elec- 
trode through which the negative electricity enters, a 
flat, tiny strip of metal. The electrode in question is 
called the cathode. If the gas be quite rarefied this 
strip remains almost perfectly dark, but right oppo- 
site the cathode, on the tube, a spot is visible which 
glows, according to the composition of the gas, with a 
yellow, green, or bluish light. This is the fluorescent 
spot. The appearance is exactly as if rectilinear rays 
proceeded from the cathode^themselves invisible but 
giving rise to the fluorescent phenomena wherever 
they strike the glass walls of the tube. A body within 
the tube intercepts these cathode-rays and throws a 
shadow on the walls of the tube. 

In this country these tubes are known as Crookes's 
tubes. Crookes varied the experiments of Hittorf in 
a highly elegant manner, and propounded the hypoth- 
esis that the cathode-rays consisted of material par- 
ticles emitted from the metal strip in rectilinear paths. 
This was the emission-theory of the cathode-rays. 
On the other hand, some German scholars, among 
them E. Wiedemann, were of opinion that the action 
which proceeded from the cathode was undulatory in 
character and bore some resemblance to the rays of 
light. What this means we shall see later. 

This was the state of our knowledge when Rontgen 
planned his delicate fluorescent experiment. To be 
able to see the weak light which was expected, the 
room was carefully darkened. Even the Crookes tube 
which he used was enveloped in a casing of dark wood, 
impenetrable to the rays of the electric light or the 
sun. Near by was a screen which had been covered 
with barium platinocyanide, such as is commonly used 
in fluorescent experiments. This substance possesses 
the property of emitting a bright white glow, of fluo- 
rescing, when it is struck by violet light-rays or cathode 

This fluorescent screen, now, was immediately 
illuminated whenever the electricity was made to pass 
through the Crookes tube, although the latter was en- 
closed in an absolutely opaque casing, and was totally 
invisible to the eye. The conclusion was that the rays 
from the tube actually passed through the black cas- 
ing, opaque though it was to ordinary light. The rays 
in question make no impression on the retina of the 
eye, that is, produce no sensation of light. Rontgen 
convinced himself that these rays did not proceed from 
the whole interior of the Crookes tube, but issued only 

from that part of it where the interior glass wall was 
struck by the cathode-rays. 

Now, if an object be placed between this spot and 
the screen, say a book of a thousand pages, a metal 
plate, or what not, a distinct, but not perfectly dark 
shadow of the body will be visible upon the screen. 
The conclusion is that Rontgen's rays pass through 
all bodies, even such gs are impervious to light and 
cathode rays, but that they are weakened or absorbed 
in the same, and that in proportion to the thickness of 
the body penetrated. 

Not only barium platinocyanide, but almost all 
fluorescent bodies, green glass, canary glass, quartz, 
may be excited to fluorescence by Rontgen's rays. 
One of their most remarkable properties is that their 
effects may be recorded upon the plates commonly 
used in photography. The character of the photo- 
graphs taken have been explained above. 

It is a significant fact that Rontgen's discovery was 
apparently due to an accident, and we may refer curi- 
ous readers, who are desirous of tracing the influence 
of this momentous factor in research, to the article by 
Professor Mach in the last Monist.^ 

* * 

The question now remains. What is the connexion 
of this new discovery with the rest of the body of 
physical knowledge ? We must first premise a remark 
on waves, which are of two kinds — transversal and 
longitudinal. A stone thrown into water depresses the 
water, which rises again, and as each particle rises 
and falls, the wave is propagated along the surface. 
Because the line of vibration is transverse to the line 
of propagation, such waves are called transversal 
waves. They would be longitudinal, if the particles 
vibrated in the same direction with the line of propa- 
gation, as where an iron rail is struck on end by a 

Now, light-waves, in the supposed ether, are trans- 
versal. All the discoveries in undulatory, or periodic, 
phenomena requiring the ether as their vehicle, can 
be explained on this hypothesis. The ordinary vis- 
ible rays, the invisible ultra-violet and ultra-red rays, 
even the electric waves of Hertz, can be satisfactorily 
represented to the eye in this manner. They differ 
only in their wave-lengths, which vary from a few 
thousandths of a millimetre to several metres. 

But longitudinal waves are also possible in this 
hypothetical ether, and their presence has long been 
suspected. They are not as easily generated, as will 
be apparent from the simplest observation of a mass 
of gelatine, to which the ether has been compared ; 
but, given an enormous velocity of propagation, they 
can, nevertheless, be produced. Hence, the moment 

i"On the Part Played by Accide 
Monjst, 1896. 

and Discovery." January 



it transpired that neither Rontgen's nor the cathode 
rays above mentioned presented the usual marks of 
transversality, the suggestion was immediate that the 
waves in question were the long-sought for longitudi- 
nal undulations of the ether. 

This opinion has been advanced by Rontgen with 
considerable reserve, but, as Professor Holtzmann 
shows, it has much in its favor. In both cases, the 
low period of vibration explains their common power 
of exciting fluorescence ; their main difference being, 
that Rontgen's rays penetrate nearly all substances, 
whilst the cathode rays are absorbed in all substances 
and can be carried only short distances from the tube. 
The reverse property in Rontgen's rays would be ex- 
plained by their great wave-length. 

Apart from its manifest practical bearings, thus, 
the cardinal significance of Rontgen's discovery con- 
sists in its having made us acquainted with an entirely 
new physical agent, which, unlike the cathode-rays, is 
easily accessible to physical manipulation. 



For many years past have appeared in England as 
well as in the United States a number of short biogra- 
phies of eminent men, divided into classes, as series 
of great statesmen, of great captains, of great authors, 
of great artists. In the series of great statesmen we 
find a well-written and very acceptable biographical 
sketch of President Monroe by Daniel G. Oilman, 
President of the Johns Hopkins University and now 
one of the members of the Venezuelan Commission. 

Some, perhaps the most, of these biographies bor- 
der upon eulogies and are comparatively worthless. 
Such is not the case however with that of Mr. Oilman, 
published in the year 1883. At the same time it is 
but natural that the author who selects as his subject 
a certain character, should choose one who appeals to 
his sympathies. 

Mr. Oilman devotes to what is called the Monroe 
Doctrine a whole chapter. Now, it is very obvious 
that an examination and a consideration of that doc- 
trine falls beyond the circle of duties strictly assigned 
to the Venezuelan Commission, but still considering 
how apt we are, often imperceptibl}', to be influenced 
by formerly conceived ideas, that apparently have no 
direct connexion with the subject in hand, it may not 
be quite uninteresting to learn in what light Mr. Gil- 
man looked upon the programme of President Mon- 
roe in his message of 1823. 

Mr. Sumner (in his Prophetic Voices, p. 157) had 
asserted that the Monroe Doctrine proceeded from 
Canning, and that he was its inventor, promoter, and 

champion, at least so far as it bears against European 
intervention in American affairs. Mr. Oilman takes 
issue on this point with Mr. Sumner, and, indeed, 
almost his whole chapter on the .Monroe Doctrine is 
directed against Mr. Sumner's assertion. Mr. Oil- 
man says (p. 156): 

"Everything which illustrates the genesis of such an impor- 
tant enunciation is of interest, but very little has come under my 
eye to illustrate the workings of Monroe's mind, to show how it 
came to pass that he uttered in such terse sentences th<i general 
opinion of his countrymen. As a rule, he was not very skilful 
with his pen ; his remarks on public affairs are not often quoted 
like those of Madison, Jefferson, and others of his contemporaries ; 
there was nothing racy or severe in his style ; nevertheless, he 
alone of all the presidents had announced, without legislative 
sanction, a political dictum, which is still regarded as a funda- 
mental law, and bears with it the stamp of authority in foreign 
courts as well as in domestic councils." 

We may remark here by the way that this political 
dictum has by no means borne the stamp of authority 
in foreign courts. The four powers, Russia, France, 
Austria, and Prussia, who had just at that time inter- 
vened in favor of legitimacy in the affairs of Piedmont, 
Naples, and Spain, to overthrow liberal governments, 
and had, at the instance of Spain, planned an inter- 
vention on the American continent, to assist Spain to 
reconquer her ancient colonies, which had declared 
their independence and successfully sustained it for 
more than ten years, those foreign powers certainly 
did not take the Monroe Doctrine as an authority 
binding upon them. They had invited England as 
early as 1822 to join them in this intervention, but 
Canning had, as Prince Metternich has told us in his 
Memoirs, brutally refused to make himself a party. 
He was anxious, for political and commercial reasons, 
to sustain those southern republics, and it was he who 
suggested to Mr. Rush, our then Minister at London, 
his wish that the United States should co-operate with 
him in thwarting the policy of the Holy Alliance, and 
would prefer that the United States should take the 
initiative. (See Richard Rush, Memoranda of a Resi- 
dence at the Court of London, republished by his son.) 

Now, the theory of Mr. Oilman is that the dictum 
of Mr. Monroe was none of his own, but that the idea 
of non-intervention by European powers was a purely 
original one of American birth, entertained as far back 
as 1780. "Indeed," Mr. Oilman says, "if it had been 
Monroe's own dictum or ukase, it would have been 
resented at home quite as vigorously as it would have 
been opposed abroad." He takes great pains to prove 
his theory "by a careful examination of the writings 
of the earlier statesmen of the republic, which," as 
he says, "will illustrate the growth of the Monroe 
Doctrine as an idea dimly entertained at first, but 
steadily developed by the course of public events and 
the reflexion of tho8§ in public life." 



Space prevents our showing that nearly all the 
citations from those statesmen have not the slightest 
bearing upon the point made by Mr. Oilman. What 
can be made from the words of a letter directed by 
General Washington, January i, 1788, to Thomas 
Jefferson: "An energetic general government must 
prevent the several States from involving themselves 
in the political disputes of the European powers"? 
As little can be proved by the words of Washington's 
celebrated farewell address, wherein he warns his 
fellow-citizens to keep aloof from entangling them- 
selves in foreign alliances. 

Similar quotations are presented by Mr. Oilman. 
Let us remember, however, under what circumstances 
the statesmen referred to by Mr. Oilman expressed 
their opinions from 1792 on to 1815. War was raging 
between England and France. Both belligerents vio- 
lated our neutrality and almost destroyed our com- 
merce, by their decrees and orders in council. France 
called upon the United States, in virtue of their treaty 
of alliance, to assist her against England. The French 
Minister and consular agents tried their best to arouse 
a feeling in favor of assisting France in this country. 
The sympathies of a majority of our people were for 
France. Parties were formed on this question, which 
bitterly opposed one another. John Adams, in his 
first inaugural address (March 4, 1797, see Oilman, 
Monroe, p. 165), in a few words characterised the situ- 
ation at the time. He says : 

" If control of an election can be obtained by foreign nations 
by flattery or menace, by fraud or violence, by terror, intrigue, or 
venality, the Government may not be the choice of the American 
people, but of foreign nations. It may be foreign nations who 
govern us, and not we, the people, who govern ourselves." 

The strongest expression of the idea, so often heard, 
America for the Americans, is found in a private letter 
of August 4, 1820, of Jefferson to William Short. He 
says : 

" From many conversations with Mr. Corea, appointed Min- 
ister to Brazil by the government of Portugal, I hope he sees and 
will promote in his new situation the advantages of a cordial fra- 
ternisation among all the American nations and the importance of 
coalescing in an American system of policy, totally independent 
and unconnected with that of Europe. The day is not distant 
when we may formally require a meridian of partition through 
the ocean which separates the two hemispheres, on the hither side 
of which no European gun shall ever be heard, nor an American 
on the other ; and when during the rage of eternal wars of Europe, 
the lion and the lamb lie down together in peace. . . . The princi- 
ples of society here and there are radically different, and I hope 
no American patriot will ever lose sight of the essential policy of 
interdicting in the seas and territories of both Americas the fero- 
cious and sanguinary contests of Europe. I wish to see the coali- 
tion begun." 

The passage is not so very clear. Brazil at the 
time was an empire nearly absolute, Canada was un- 
der strictly English colonial government, England, 

Holland, and France had valuable possessions in this 
hemisphere. In fact these European colonies were 
three or four times as large as the United States. 
Mr. Monroe himself in his message has distinctly 
stated : " With the existing colonies or dependencies 
of any European power, we have not interfered and 
shall not interfere." No such coalition even in little 
Central and South American Republics, although sev- 
eral times attempted, has ever been formed, and the 
drawing of a meridian line between the two hemi- 
spheres was an impossible thing in every aspect, and 
Mr. Jefferson would never in any public document 
have indulged in this sort of dream. 

It will be recollected that when Mr. Sumner spoke 
of Mr. Canning being the inventor of the Monroe Doc- 
trine, he confined himself to the non-intervention 
clause. Nothing is said by him, as far as he is cited 
by Mr. Oilman, of the colonisation passage. That it 
must be admitted originated in the brain of Mr. Mon- 
roe, or rather, as we shall see, in the brain of Mr. 
John Quincy Adams. Much is said just now that Eng- 
land hailed the non-intervention declaration of Mr. 
Monroe with joy, that the English liberal press gave it 
its hearty approval ; but Mr. Oilman does not seem to 
be aware that Mr. Canning expressed at once his great 
dissatisfaction with the other declaration, "that the 
American continents, are henceforth not to be consid- 
ered as subjects for future colonisation by any Euro- 
pean powers." He argued that Mr. Adams's enuncia- 
tion rested upon false premises, that he had assumed 
that the whole continent was settled by civilised na- 
tions, that so far from that being the fact, the Central 
and Southern part of the continent was to a great ex- 
tent a wilderness, traversed by roaming savage In- 
dians without any fixed government, and that by im- 
memorial usage such countries had always been con- 
sidered fit subjects of colonisation by foreign powers, 
who took possession of the country either by negotia- 
tion with the various wild tribes, or by force. If I 
am not mistaken in one of his speeches, he openly 
repudiated the colonisation doctrine. 

This reasoning seems to be justified. France took 
Canada, the Puritans the New England States, the 
Cavaliers the Virginias. 

There is another important fact which seems to 
have escaped the examination of Mr. Oilman, that is 
to say, that the House of Representatives, when the 
message of Mr. Monroe was yet fresh in the minds of 
Congress, and when it seems that even at that time it 
had received by some a wrong construction, passed a 
resolution in 1824 to this effect : 

" That the United States ought not to become a party with 
the Spanish American republics, or either of them, to any joint 
declaration for the purpose of preventing interference by any of 
the European powers with their independence or form of govern- 




ment, or to any compact for the purpose of preventing colonisa- 
tion upon the continents of America, but that the people of the 
United States should be left free to act in any crisis in such man- 
ner as their feeling of friendship towards those republics, and as 
their own honor and policy may at the time dictate." 

Mr. Oilman might have referred to what Mr. Cal- 
houn, one of the advisers of Mr. Monroe, and who in 
the Cabinet took most interest in the declaration, as- 
serted most emphatically in regard to it, on the debate 
in the Senate on the question of the acquisition of 
Yucatan; that "the United States were under no 
pledge to intervene against intervention but were to 
act in each case as policy and justice required." This 
was the view of a statesman, which Mr. Calhoun un- 
doubtedly was. 

Mr. Calhoun is reported to have declared at a later 
period that the draft of the message submitted to the 
Cabinet and approved by it, did not contain the col- 
onisation clause. That Mr. Adams put that in without 
the knowledge and consent of the Cabinet. The truth 
of this statement, if it was ever made, derives some 
force by the singular fact that the two clauses, which 
logically belong together, are found in widely different 
parts of the message. A resolution introduced by Mr. 
Clay, January, 1824, in the House of Representatives, 
deprecating European combinations to resubjugate 
the independent American States, and thus giving 
support and emphasis to the declaration in the mes- 
sage of December 2, 1820, was never acted upon. 

Mr. Oilman, it seems to me, entertains the view 
that the Monroe Doctrine has become a part of in- 
ternational law, though he does not distinctly say so. 
It may be inferred from what he states at the com- 
mencement of his chapter on the Monroe Doctrine. 
"The one event of his presidency which is indissolubly 
associated with his name, is an announcement of the 
policy of the United States in respect to foreign inter- 
ference on this continent. The declaration bears the 
name of the ' Monroe Doctrine. ' As such it is discussed 
in works of public law and in general histories. It is 
commonly regarded as an epitome of the principles of 
the United States with respect to the development of 
American States." And again: "Mr. Monroe has 
announced a political dictum which is still regarded 
as a fundamental law and bears with it the stamp of 
authority in foreign courts as well as in domestic coun- 

If thereby it is meant to interpolate the Monroe 
Doctrine into the International Law, I modestly but 
strongly dissent from this theory. What part the Mon- 
roe Doctrine played or rather did not play in the Mex- 
ican invasion by the French and the withdrawal of the 
French troops at our instance is quite an interesting 
theme, which, however, does not fall within the scope 
of the present article. 


One of the latest issues of the Chicago Sunday Tri- 
bune contains a sermon by the Rev. Oeorge T. Smith 
of Chicago, entitled " Ood's Responsibility to Man." 
The sermon is remarkable in more than one respect. 
It shows progressiveness in one way and a reactionary 
tendency in another. The author of this sermon rec- 
ognises to some extent the identity of nature's God 
and nature's laws. He says : 

"The laws of nature are true; they never lie. Nature is 
God's thought materialised. Reason and conscience are God's 
thoughts incased and individualised in man." 

But at the same time the Rev. Mr. Smith regards 
God as a person, and certainly if God be a person there 
can be no question about it that he is responsible for 
his creation and the government of the world. St. 
Paul may be right that the potter is not responsible to 
the vessels he makes, because vessels are not sentient 
creatures; but if the vessels were sentient beings like 
men, the potter would be responsible for their fate. 
The Rev. Mr. Smith says : 

"God is responsible by his nature not to outrage the highest, 
purest instincts of man. 'We may safely say He cannot do so. He 
cannot deny himself. . . . 

" Then the judge of all the earth is responsible to man to do 
right. Abraham stood pleading for Sodom. ' 'Wilt thou slay the 
righteous with the wicked ? ' God consented to save the entire 
city if there were fifty, forty, or thirty, or twenty, or even ten, 
righteous men there, and he never stopped lessening the number 
till Abraham stopped asking.^ He saved Lot ; He tried to save 
his sons-in-law, but they would not hear. The Judge of all is re- 
sponsible to man for just dealing. . . . 

" God is our maker. He is responsible that we are made ig- 
norant; that we have no burden laid on us beyond our strength ; 
no duty imposed which we cannot discharge. . . . 

" There are those who, by superior cunning, are able to prey 
on their fellow-men, who trample upon or evade the laws of men. 
For these judgment waits. The Judge will do right. Eternity 
will show that there is no gain in wrongdoing, no profit in steal- 
ing or gambling, though it be under forms of law. . . . 

" God, our Father, is to provide for and to train his children 
into manhood. . . . The King of Kings is responsible for victory 
over foes too strong for unaided man." 

The Tribune preacher winds up his sermon in the 
last paragraph as follows : 

"There is no more responsible being in the universe than 
God, and full well does He discharge that responsibility. . . . He 
will deliver the righteous from every evil, and reserve the unjust 
to the day of judgment to be punished." 

This is a strange sermon, a sermon that probably 
has never been preached before in any one of the 
Christian pulpits, yet it is a straw in the wind, it 
proves at least a partial progress : it proves that the 
clergy in America dare to walk in untrodden paths. 
If God were an individual being, a huge world-maker. 
He would indeed be (as the Rev. Mr. Smith says) the 
most responsible being in the universe. 

1 Gen. xviii. 



The truth is that God is not an individual being at 
all. For God is identical with the irresistible majesty 
of the laws of nature, and especially with the moral 
law which is the condition of man's existence as a ra- 
tional and moral being. God is not a law-giver, who, 
like a king, enforces justice. God may be compared 
to a law-giver, to a king, to a father, but He is no law- 
giver, no king, no father. He is God, and God is that 
which is irresistible ; He is omnipotence itself. God 
is the eternal law of justice itself. He who breaks the 
law will smart under its curse ; he who obeys it will 
enjoy its blessing. To attribute to God responsibility 
is an anthropomorphic conception of God, it humanises 

A peculiar lesson is involved in the fact that Bud- 
dhism, the greatest non-Christian religion, which is 
distinguished for inculcating the noblest moral max- 
ims, such as love of enemies, chastity, sincerity of 
heart, and charity toward all suffering creatures, knows 
nothing about God. Unfriendly critics have on that 
account branded Buddhists as atheists, and yet they 
face the same facts of life and have derived therefrom 
the same rules of ethical conduct. The main differ- 
ence between Christians and Buddhists consists in the 
employment of different systems of comprehending 
and symbolising the facts of experience. Both reli- 
gions, Christianity as well as Buddhism, recognise an 
authority for moral conduct. The former call it Christ, 
the latter Buddha. Christ reveals to Christians the 
will of God ; Buddha teaches men enlightenment. 
There is this difference : that Christ appears as the 
son of God, and therefore his teachings must be ac- 
cepted as revealed truth, while Buddha is a man, who 
after a diligent search at last obtained the highest wis- 
dom, that will deliver mankind from evil. In Chris- 
tianity the sonship of Christ vouches for the truth of 
Christ's message, while in Buddhism Buddha's en- 
lightenment constitutes his Buddhahood. Now Buddha 
teaches that enlightenment is the same, and that all 
Buddhas teach the same religion, which consists in 
the abandonment of the vanity of selfhood, of all 
hatred and envy, and of lust, implying at the same 
time a far-reaching and unbounded love, which re- 
fuses none, not even those who hate and despise us, 
compassion with all those that suffer, and holiness. 
Enlightenment is a living recognition of the truth seen 
in its moral application to practical life, and truth is a 
summarised statement of facts, or rather the laws per- 
vading the facts and constituting a comprehensive as- 
pect of their eternality. And this essence of Buddha- 
hood, the eternal laws, the recognition of which con- 
stitute enlightenment, has been formulated by the 
later Buddhists under the name of Amitabha, which 
means illimitable light, and is conceived as eternal, 
immutable, and omnipresent. It is the Sambhoga- 

Kaya (the body of bliss) among the three personalities 
of Buddha, the other two being the Nirmdna-Kaya, 
the apparitional body of Buddha the teacher, and the 
Dhartna-Kaya, the body of the law, which is Buddha's 
religion in its historical development. ^ 

The facts are the same in Buddhism and in Chris- 
tianity; the modes only of formulating them in sym- 
bolical expressions varies. Both religions recognise 
an authority of conduct which, in a word, we may call 
"the ethical law of the universe, as manifested in the 
evolution of life." 

According to Buddhist notions, every man is re- 
sponsible for his fate, for every living creature is the 
incarnation of his karma. We are our own makers. 
We reap what we have sown. In this conception, 
every single creature is no longer regarded as an in- 
dividual being whose fate begins with its birth and 
ends with its death. Every creature is regarded 
in its connexion with the whole world of life as the 
continuation of preceding life. Every creature is the 
result of the karma done in its former existences. 

The aim of the Buddhist is to understand the law 
of life, and to act in agreement with it. Enlighten- 
ment concerning the problems of man's soul, implying * 
the right attitude of mind vvith regard to our duties, 
constitutes Buddhahood. Thus, to the Buddhist there 
is no problem of a conflict between the existence of 
evil in the world and the goodness of Amitabha, the 
external conditions of Buddhahood. The existence of 
evil in this world is the result of our own doing. We 
are the builders of our own fate, and we must be our 
own saviours. 

If a bridge breaks down under the weight of rail- 
road cars too heavy for its construction, is the law of 
gravitation responsible for the lives that are lost in the 
wreck ? According to the Buddhist conception the 
engineer is responsible. There is no Brahma respon- 
sible for our mistakes, or even our ignorance, but we 
ourselves are guilty of both. The constitution of life, 
and of the laws of life, are no secrets. They are open 
to all and can be investigated and obeyed, and if the 
bridge be constructed by an intelligent engineer, it 
will carry the passengers over the river to the other 
bank. He who understands his own being and the 
laws underlying the development of life will no longer 
throw the responsibility of his misfortunes on others, 
be they gods or men, but will, like Faust in Goethe's 
grand drama, seek salvation in helpful deeds that will 
live after him and preserve the bliss of his life in all 
generations to come. p. c. 


It is possible that Mr. Gladstone's policy was weak because 
he allowed himself to be swayed by sentimental considerations 
and lacked the principle of energetic action. But Lord Salisbury's 
1 Compare The Gospel Buddha^ pp. 225 et seq. 



policy is worse ; his policy leaves no room for sympathies with 
the wronged ones or the suffering, nor with noble ideals. He de- 
clares that England can do nothing to stop the massacres in Ar- 
menia because it might cost her some sacrifice. No word is lost 
about the moral aspect of the question ; that is dismissed simply 
by referring to the Cyprus Convention, which "contains no trace 
of an undertaking to interfere in behalf of the subjects of the Sul- 
tan." This is Shylock's answer when the commonest regard for 
human life is expected of him ; he says : " It is not in the bond !'• 
Lord Salisbury may be right enough in his declarations that the Sul- 
tan has the best intentions, that he has recently accepted reforms 
and that the powers should have patience with him, because his 
"government is weak, wretched, impotent, and powerless." A 
hostile demonstration against Turkey might be the signal for worse 
atrocities. But if the Sultan is weak, why not offer the Sultan as- 
sistance. If the offer were made with suffjcient seriousness and 
with honest guarantees of preserving the integrity of the Turkish 
empire, he would have no reason to refuse and could do so only 
if he did not care for the dispensation of justice and the restora- 
tion of order in Armenia. Salisbury fears a European war ; he 
says : "If you do not act wilh the great powers, you must act 
against them." Why against them ? Where is the logic of the 
great Premier ? Why did he not say "without them"? Russia 
did not interfere, although it would have been her interest, and 
no European war would have resulted from Russia's interference. 
Since Russia did not interfere, the duty of interference devolved 
upon England, and if England had been isolated on account of 
her willingness to rescue their Christian brethren from the sword 
of assassins, if they had combined against her, she might have 
been proud of fighting for a righteous cause — which we are sorry 
to add could not be said of the opium war against China, of the 
Ashantee invasion, of Dr. Jameson's expedition, nor of the humil- 
iation of Khama the Bamangwato chief. 

Lord Salisbury declared that in his dispatch to Mr. Olney 
he had "supported the Monroe Doctrine as a rule of policy in 
strong and most distinct terms ; but, " he adds in his banquet speech, 
" what I stated in that dispatch I reiterate now, we mean the Doc- 
trine as President Monroe understood it." That is all, the United 
States can expect. President Monroe said, that "with the [Amer- 
"ican] governments which have declared their independence and 
"maintained it, f,nd whose independence we have, on great con- 
" sideration and principles, acknowledged, we could not view an 
"interposition for oppressing them, or controlling in any other 
" manner their destiny by any European power, in any other light 
" than as a manifestation of an unfriendly disposition towards the 
"United States." Lord Salisbury's actions did not agree with his 
words ; but if he will act in the future in agreement with his words, 
his policy will encounter no trouble in the United States. 

* « 

There is an Illinois State ordinance of 1818, prohibiting the 
opening of any business on Sunday, which has not been enforced 
for twenty-five years, and now on a sudden the State's attorney of 
La Salle County, III., secures a jury which swoops down upon the 
saloon-keepers of Peru and La Salle, indicting them for not clos- 
ing their doors on the Sabbath. But the jury did not stop here, 
they indicted the Mayors of La Salle and Peru for " unlawfully, 
wilfully, knowingly, and contemptuously permitting the owners of 
certain dramshops to keep their places of business open on Sun- 

Mayor Matlhiessen, who is now serving his fourth term, was 
elected by a large majority of the citizens of La Salle, and he has 
done more for the town by his good administration than any pre- 
vious Mayor. When an electric-light company demanded exorbi- 
tant prices for street lighting, the Mayor donated a whole electric- 
light plant to the city. Through another generous gift, he made it 
possible that the town should own its own water-works, which 

otherwise might have become the source of an unusually profitable 
revenue of a few private individuals at the expense of the com- 

There are a few fanatic temperance men only who approve of 
the indictment, and even they do not dare to attack the Mayor's 
character, but only claim that the letter of the law must be 
obeyed. They expect that the Mayor shall prevent the citizens 
from drinking beer on Sunday, while ihe Mayor regards it beneath 
the dignity of his office to turn the policemen into informers and 
use them as spies. 

There is no need of discussing the malignity of the indict- 
ment and its probable result; we mention the occurrence only on 
account of the principle involved of obeying or not-obeying the 
law. The Mayor promised to support the laws of the State ; but 
he did not promise to enforce them, nor is that required of him, 
for the Mayor's office is not and cannot be a State institution. 
Further, these Sunday regulations are not laws, but ordinances ; 
and lastly, the Mayor can be tried only for palpable malfeasance 
in office, but not for a mere neglect of trifles. We care little for 
the facts implied in the present case, especially whether or not it 
is an offence to sell a pint of beer on Sunday. The practical ques- 
tion at issue is, whether citizens elected to administrative offices 
must not only obey, but must also enforce the very letter of laws 
and ordinances, even of those which in their judgment are either 
impracticable or unjust. Is there not a higher norm than the let- 
ter of the law ? 

The question how to deal with laws that are impracticable or 
unjust in themselves has been repeatedly discussed by the late 
Professor Ihering of Gottingen, one of the highest juridical author- 
ities. He says that the spirit of a law is its purpose.' The word- 
ing of the law is of secondary consideration, if but the purpose be 
rightly understood, and if the purpose of a law be irrational or un- 
just, a judge must interpret the law in the sense which it would 
have acquired, if the powers who formulated the law had seen 
its fallacy or unfairness. The problem of observing the laws is 
not so easy as it may at first sight appear to the unsophisticated 
mind of the inexperienced layman, for the trouble is that there are 
laws that contradict one another, and then magistrates have only 
the choice as to which law should be disobeyed, but it is sure that 
somewhere they must give offence. 

What shall we d > under these circumstances ? Christ said : 
" The letter killeth, but the spirit quickeneth." The ethics of a 
blind obedience with their many shortcomings are good enough 
for an immature people ; but we need a higher conception of duty. 
We have the right to expect of our magistrates that they shall be 
men who think and weigh and judge ; and not mere legal ma- 
chines. There is an old superstition that bad laws must be en- 
forced so that they may be abolished. As if the people existed 
or the sake of the laws, and not the laws for the sake of the peo- 
ple ! Shall we begin witch-prosecution and the burning of witches 
again simply that the old laws against witchcraft be abrogated ? 

Besides the shades of difference in the conception of a law are 
sometimes very slight, and the changes in the public sentiment of 
right and wrong are with few exceptions gradual. 

He who understands the nature of evolution, not only in the 
domain of law, but also of religion, and in all other fields, knows 
that the world of thought is transformed by imperceptible changes 
which are effected, not by tearing down the letter of old formulas, 
but by giving them a new interpretation. Thus laws are abro- 
gated only if they come suddenly into conflict with new and better, 
with broader and juster conceptions. As a rule, the judges them- 
selves begin to interpret them more broadly and change their 
original meaning in agreement with the needs of the time. 

We Americans have come to the conclusion that kings can 

1 See Rudolf Ihering, Der Zweck im Recht. 




make no laws ; but there is a superstition still prevalent among 
us that majorities can do so. Majorities can pass ordinances, they 
can for the preservation of peace temporarily enforce a certain 
way of administering the law, but they cannot make wrong right, 
or right wrong ; and a true law — law in the highest sense of the 
word — can never be in contradiction to the principle of that which 
is right. There are many so-called laws in our country which are 
simply majority-decisions in the way of experimenting in legal af- 
fairs and trying for a while a certain policy, which is erroneously 
thought to be right. Laws that are morally wrong will not and 
should not find many supporters among the officers of a genuine 
republic. It might have been foreseen that it would be difficult 
to enforce a law such as the Fugitive Slave Law. Have not even 
judges, magistrates, and ministers of monarchies laid their heads 
on the block rather than obey a bad law ? Did not Sophocles in his 
great tragedy "Antigone" proclaim to the Athenians that the un- 
written law is above the law of kings and States ? 

Those who speak of the sanctity of the letter of the law de- 
manding blind obedience to ordinances simply because they have 
nominally become law, are responsible for the prevalence of 
anarchism ; for if a man be requested to suppress the voice of 
conscience, if he must cease to investigate and judge for himself 
as to what be right or wrong, he will soon come to the conclusion 
that all law is a heinous tyranny and the embodiment of oppres- 
sion which robs man of the most essential dignity of his manhood. 

We must take the risk of an occasional wrong decision or mis- 
take of judgment in a man in office. Liberty carries its own cor- 
rective in the evils that follovv its abuses. Liberty of conscience 
and liberty in the interpretation of the law for both the citizens 
and magistrates are an indispensable condition of the public wel- 
ware. Instead of giving way to licence, as some claim, the result 
will be that the significance of the law will be better understood 
and reverenced than ever. 

This should be the order of authority of the ideas that sway 
an American citizen, if, as an officer of town, or state, or govern- 
ment, he has to decide for the people the legality of a certain ordi- 
nance or law; above all laws stands what Sophocles calls "the 
unwritten laws," what Christians call the will of God, what the 
philosopher finds to be the eternal moral relations of society. 
Upon these the founders of our republic meant to take their stand, 
and thus we are secondly bound by the formulation in which they 
laid down their views of right and justice, viz., the Constitution 
of the United States as interpreted by the principles contained in 
the Declaration of Independence. After the Constitution of the 
United States we are bound to consider the Constitution of our 
particular State, and after that come the ordinances of cities and 
townships — always provided that they do not collide with any 
higher authority, but are proposed solely for carrying out by de- 
tail regulations the great principles of law and justice which are 
the foundation of the whole structure of laws and ordinances. 



To the Editor of The Open Court: 

Allow me to thank you in your columns, not only for publish- 
ing "Our Cleveland Christmas," in spite of personal disagree- 
ment, but for maintaining that "it is always best to let everybody 
speak out plainly what he believes." I think more highly than 
Mr. Conway does of our national Constitution ; but I cannot ad- 
mit that it is too sacred to be criticised. John Stuart Mill has 
proved the right of holders of unpopular views to be heard dis- 
passionately. The Open Court could not, consistently with its 
title, exclude an article on account of its opinions, if it were de- 

sirable otherwise. The Religion of'Science is not going to revive 
the Inquisition in defence of any doctrine, even Monroe's. Has 
not that doctrine truth enough to hold its own in public discus- 
sion ? 

Permit me also to say that if Mr. Conway is mistaken in think- 
ing that our country is losing ground in Europe on account of 
" repudiations," silver bills, and similar errors, he ought to be re- 
futed, and not merely denounced. If there is any truth in this 
statement, we ought to treat him as we would a friend who helps 
us find out that we need a doctor badly. F. M. Holland. 



Nay, Soul, thy span is not from womb to tomb: 
Thine every when and where of space and years ; 
Thou art the past incarnate, and thine ears 

Know not a prophecy of death. The doom 

Of all deeds done thou art, and thou the womb 
Wherein a dream of full omniscience bears 
Forever toward the birth ; for lo, Life rears 

So vast a hope amid its mystery-gloom! 

Yea, Soul, in thee the living past fares hence, 
And fronts the future with a nascent god, 

In sleepless toil amid the elements 

Enkindling thought, and waking sense in sod : 
The Infinite woos the outward : Life grows broad. 

Subliming Nature to Intelligence. 



CHICAGO, ILLINOIS, Post Office Drawer F. 

E. C. HEGELER, Publisher. 



$1.00 PER YEAR. $0.50 FOR SIX MONTHS. 

N. B. Binding Cases for single yearly volumes ol The Opbn Court will 
be supplied on order. Price, 75 cents each. 



Rbntgen's Discovery. T. J. McCormack 4799 




EVENTS OF TO-DAY. Editor 4804 


" Our Cleveland Christmas." F.M.Holland 4806 


Amrita. Charles Alva Lane 4806 


A living hand taken by Rontgen's X-rays in the Physical Laboratory of Ham- 
burg. Reproduced through the courtesy of Prof. H. Schubert. 

The plates on which the photograph was received were locked in a closed 
photographer's box, so that the rays had to pass both through the hand and the 
wooden cover. 

The Open Court. 



No. 442. (Vol. X.-7.) 


j One Dollar per Year. 
) Single Copies, 5 Cents. 

Copyright by The Open Court Publishing Co. — Reprints are permitted only on condition of giving full credit to author and publisher. 


[The success of the projected Second Religious Parliament 
in Paris seems to be assured. Abbe Charbonnel has received a 
number of letters from leading men commenting upon his views 
set forth in an article published in the Revue de Paris. Among 
them there are only two that doubt the advisability of holding a 
Second Religious Parliament, — Mgr. Jaufifret, Bishop of Bayonne, 
and Prof. Alfred Baudrillart. We offer our readers a translation 
of Abb^ Charbonnel's letters as published in the Revue Bleue of 
Paris. ] 

[Bishop of Bayonne.] 

Bayonne, October 24, 1895. 

Sir — I do not approve of the projected Congress. 

It seems to me that it is a concession to the doc- 
trinal scepticism which is invading and to the notion 
now prevailing among the middle classes, that all 
doctrines are of equal value. 

This kind of modified Christianity robs faith of its 
simplest and most fundamental motive of credence, 
which is the authority of the Church. It is a step 
backward toward the natural theology of the pagans. 

The people will conclude that they have been led 
into error until now, not only concerning the rights of 
the Gospel, which must be believed in its whole content, 
but also concerning its efficacy, which belongs espe- 
cially to the Catholic doctrine, which is the truth, to 
procure the welfare of society and of the individual. 

I could call attention to certain expressions in your 
article, for instance, "the old confessional separa- 
tions." Were these separations not established by our 
Saviour himself? 

Nevertheless, I pay my respects to your unques- 
tionable talents, your undoubted zeal, and the noble 
aspirations of your heart. 

I confess that I shall be a little embarrassed to 
find myself opposed to the high dignitaries and re- 
nowned churchmen whom your letter names, and 
whom I both love and respect. Francois, 

Bishop 0/ Bayonne. 


[Priest of the Oratory and Doctor of Theology at the Catholic 

Institute at Paris.] 

Dear Sir — I indeed admired very much the lecture 

which Mgr. Keane delivered at Brussels, and which I 

have published in the Bulletin Critique, but if a Con- 
gress of Religions was quite legitimate in a country 
where many religions exist, I cannot be persuaded 
that it will be useful for us. I even believe, although 
something might be said against this objection, that 
the French are not sufficiently religious to support the 
enterprise without prejudice. Further, if the Catho- 
lics of America did well to take part in a Congress 
proposed by others, and which would have taken place 
without them, it seems to me that Catholics should 
not take the initiative in assemblages of this kind. ' 
(Signed) Alfred Baudrillart. 

[Professor at the University of Louvain.] 

Louvain, November r, 1895. 

Honored Sir — You ask me for advice concerning 
the holding of a Second Religious Parliament in Paris, 
and in response to the confidence with which you 
honor me, I shall speak my mind with perfect frank- 
ness and simplicity. 

If this Second Congress be exactly like the first, if 
the representatives of the Catholic religion can play 
in that grand European city the same role as in Chi- 
cago, it seems to me not doubtful that the results of 
the Second Congress will be good and even better 
than those of the first. 

It is, therefore, necessary above all to take such 
measures that in our unfortunate Europe and under 
the influences to which France, and especially Paris, 
are exposed to-day, the Freethinkers shall not take the 
leadership of a gathering of religious people. 

If, therefore, one could be assured of an amiable 
and orderly procedure at the meetings of the Parlia- 
ment of Religions, and also that Catholicism would 
receive the place due to it, I could only join with my 
feeble voice those distinguished men who demand a 
new meeting of the Congress and a repetition of the 
touching scenes of which the American city was a 
happy witness. 

Facts have proved that the Catholic religion has 
nothing to fear from these brotherly meetings, among 
which it does not make its appearance as a merely 
human religion like all the rest, but where it is re- 
vealed to many noble and sincere minds who do not 
know it, or have a wrong idea of it. 



How powerful, hiow efficient is a simple exposition 
of our dogmas stated in the language of brotherly 
love! Who does not know the advice of the sweet 
Apostle of Chablais, of the great ecclesiastical Doctor, 
Francois de Sales ? 

" In order to convince and to convert dissenters, 
do not argue, but avoid all polemics. Polemics irri- 
tate and ruffle. Set forth your belief with simplicity 
and precision. If it be properly understood it will 
have a greater effect than all the artifices of dialectics." 

Nothing is truer than this. Truth is beautiful in 
itself. Truth has charms which attract the heart. But 
she is often disguised and unknown. Tear down the 
veils, let her appear as she is! That is the first con- 
dition of a successful propaganda. 

But where could one do it with more success than 
in a gathering which will unite all distinguished men 
and the priests of all religions under the sun ? What 
a unique opportunity for sowing the seeds of the Gos- 
pel in non-Christian countries! What a grand oppor- 
tunity to dispel prejudices which estrange from us 
both the worshippers of Oriental religions and the 
Christians outside the fold of the Roman Church ! 
These prejudices, one does not know how, sometimes 
lead to contempt and even to hatred. Should we not 
joyfully seize the opportunity that offers itself to 
change them into sentiments of brotherly love ? 

And to a Christian who finds himself in a gathering 
of this kind, what a lesson will be the sight of a num- 
ber of men entangled in errors, sometimes of the 
gravest kind ! What a shout of gratitude rises in his 
heart towards the God of goodness who has protected 
him against this darkness and illumined him with 
light! What a burning desire is kindled in his bosom 
to communicate to his brothers in God this incompar- 
able privilege which makes him the direct heir of the 
kingdom of heaven ! 

The mere sight of a Parliament of Religions ought 
to kindle the sentiments of thankfulness and love of 
God, of piety, of charity, of zeal for extending salva- 
tion to his unfortunate brethren, in the heart of a 
Christian. And is this not already a great achieve- 
ment ? 

The Catholics who were witnesses of the memor- 
able scenes at Chicago attest unanimously that there 
a wonderful movement originated towards a unity of 
faith, toward monotheism, and even toward the Gos- 
pel. At the same time, their hearts were pervaded by 
love and compassion for all honest souls deprived of 
the light of the true faith. But that this movement 
should persist and develop, it is, of course, necessary 
that the impulse should be renewed. Otherwise it 
would weaken and die out. 

One can only wish to see a Second Parliament of 
Religions develop the happy results of the first. It 

will help to hasten the moment when there will be 
only one flock and one shepherd, when all men will 
worship, not only with one voice as in Chicago, but 
with one and the same sentiment the heavenly Father, 
whose kingdom will spread over the whole earth, and 
whose will shall be done. 

Could we but see dimly the dawn of this happy 
day ! C. de Harlez. 


[Leader of the Catholic party in Belgium and author of "L'eglise 
catholique et la liberty aux Etats-Unis."] 

Sir— I beg you to excuse the delay of my reply to 
the important and delicate question with which you 
have honored me. 

The Religious Congress of Chicago, that extraor- 
dinary and unprecedented event, was a most happy oc- 
currence. Christians, especially Catholics, ought to 
rejoice in it. We should not doubt it after the for- 
mal testimony of Cardinal Gibbons and Mgr. Keane. 
There was reason to fear such a union, and several 
Catholic bishops actually did fear it ; but since it 
took place it would have been unfortunate if our church 
after the fashion of Mohammedanism and of Angli- 
canism had declined the invitation extended to her. 
It was good for her to be represented. 

There the remnants of primitive religion, frag- 
ments of truth, dispersed among the non-Christian 
religions, viz., in the Asiatic cults, received the light. 
Their tendency to approach Christianity in the meas- 
ure that they comprehended it, is manifest, and the 
Christian faith, particularly the Catholic faith, shone 
forth in a pure and brilliant light. Thus I could con- 
gratulate myself on having been one of the first in 
France in the Correspondent of January 25, 1894, to 
attract the attention of religious men to this event. 

It remains to be seen whether it will be advisable 
to convene in France during the next Exposition a like 
Congress, whether the Catholics should inaugurate it, 
and in case they should not take the initiative, whether 
they should participate in it. 

Two conditions determined the success of the Con- 
gress at Chicago, preserving both peace and liberty : 

1. Controversy was excluded. The representa- 
tives of the various religions expounded successively 
their creeds and deeds, without attacking the creeds 
and deeds of others. 

2. It was held in a religious atmosphere. The 
men that in America are called agnostics, and infidels, 
the same who in Europe are called Freethinkers, oc- 
cupy little place in the society of the United States, 
they held still less in the assembly at Chicago, not- 
withstanding they were not excluded. In spite of the 
diversities of race and language, of doctrines and 
morals, the members of this cosmopolitan parliament 



discovered among them certain principles and senti- 
ments in common. 

Will these two conditions be reproduced at Paris? 
It is difficult to expect it. 

It will doubtless be hard for the French mind, nat- 
urally militant, to expound without discussion, to af- 
firm a doctrine without combating the opposite doc- 
trine. Even the suppleness of our language lends it- 
self to thrust, to hostile allusions which provoke re- 
taliation. In short, this momentous religious affair 
could easily degenerate into polemical discussions, 
and in a rapid space of time these would cease to be 
orderly, serious, and complete. 

But above all, in the face of the various religions 
of humanity, what place would irreligion hold ? If we 
close the door upon it European thought will not be 
presented in its entirety, and if we admit it what will 
it seek among the various cults, if not division ? To 
what will it apply itself, armed with ironical disdain, 
if not to sow discord and thus help negation to pre- 
vail ? 

These, in my opinion, are the dangers of a project 
the grandeur and importance of which I otherwise do 
not underrate. I do not state these dangers with- 
out regret, for they prove the defects of our time and 
our country. They may not be insurmountable but 
they are formidable, and if the leaders of our Church 
in France do not consent to brave them I will neither 
blame them nor would it surprise me. 

Could a Congress of Religions be held at Paris 
without being convened and supported by them ? In 
such a case the duly authorised Catholics who would 
preside there would have to consider which would be 
heavier, the responsibility assumed by taking part, or 
by refusing to do so. 

In a word, it devolves on the men who can judge 
of the religious condition of France, and the needs 
of souls there, not upon me, to answer such questions. 
All we can do is to agitate them, but not to decide 
them. VicoMTE de Meaux. 


[Delegate of the French Protestants to the Parliament of Reli- 
gions at Chicago.] 

Monsieur I'Abb^ — You ask me to express by letter 
my opinion upon the question of a Universal Congress 
of Religions at Paris in 1900 — a question which you 
presented in strong terms in the Revue de Paris of 
September i. 

My adhesion to the principle of such a Congress 
could not be doubtful, for I myself have become con- 
vinced of the happy result of the Parliament at Chi- 
cago, for the awakening of religious life, the estab- 
lishment of interconfessional peace, and the influence 

of missionaries on pagan nations. From all these 
points of view a like enterprise can only contribute to 
the advancement of the reign of truth, of justice, and 
fraternity upon earth. This is why I join you with all 
my heart. 

However, I do not overlook the difficulties which 
the project involves. First, proud though I am to 
think that the capital of France should have been the 
place chosen for so noble a rendezvous, yet Paris seems 
to me to offer a less favorable soil for such a gathering 
than Chicago or any other American city, or a federal 
country like Switzerland. 

In the United States the clergy are in closer con- 
tact with the people and associate more willingly with 
the movements of public opinion. In France the eccle- 
siastics are subject to a powerful hierarchy, and form a 
body much more closed to external influences. More- 
over, in America, on account of the multiplicity of 
races and religions, there has for a long time existed 
a powerful spirit of tolerance, and the habit of co- 
operating in works of charity. In our country often 
disrupted, alas! by religious wars, or distracted by 
political revolutions, we are, on the contrary sur- 
rounded by a crowd of prejudiced and rancorous per- 
sons, to say nothing of the confessional hatred that 
opposes all approach. These obstacles, however, are 
not invincible. The existence in Paris itself of the 
League Against Atheism and of the Union for Moral 
Action, which counts in its ranks Catholics, Protes- 
tants, and Israelites, is a good augury for the success 
of a Congress of Religions. 

The greatest difficulty, it appears to me, is on the 
side of the Catholic Church, which preponderates in 
France. Accustomed to treat dissenters as a factor 
that can be ignored, she would see a derogation of her 
privileges in any participation in a Congress of Reli- 

There is a misunderstanding that first of all must 
be dissipated. The Congress at Paris, like that at Chi- 
cago, should not be a parliament or council where the 
different religions would give themselves up to contro- 
versy and discussion to decide which is the best among 
them. Each ought, according to its doctrine, to ex- 
pound the solution which it is able to furnish of the 
moral and social problems which occupy humanity, 
and that without suppressing and also without criticis- 
ing other solutions. 

Further, the Congress will not be, as some appear 
to fear, " a crucible where all the religions will melt 
into an impossible unity, which will result in a univer- 
sal religion." No, its role will be more modest. It 
will strive only, as did the organisers of the Congress 
at Chicago, to form the holy league of all religions 
against irreligion and against immoralit)'; all cults to 
proclaim these two articles of evangelical faith : "I 



believe in one God," and "All men are brothers, "and 
then to adopt "Our Father" for the universal prayer. 
The Pope, Leo XIII., with his breadth of mind 
and his almost prophetic foresight, has understood 
the high value of a new Congress and the impulse that 
it would give Christianity toward unity. He has pro- 
nounced a favorable opinion on the project. But he 
has reserved liberty of action for the Church of France. 
All depends, then, on the decision of her leaders. 
Perhaps they will comprehend what a powerful stimu- 
lant to faith and piety such a Congress may be — and 
then they will come to this Congress of all the reli- 
gions, in which they are sure to obtain all the honors 
due to them, and where they can keep intact the lib- 
erty of their convictions. Or they will refuse to par- 
ticipate in such an assembly, and then they will carry 
the heavy responsibility of rendering the Congress im- 
possible. To let escape the most beautiful occasion 
which will ever be presented to them to make glorious 
in the eyes of the pagan, the uninformed, and the in- 
credulous freethinker, this Gospel and this cross of 
Christ to which has been promised the victory over 
the world ! G. Bonet-Maurv. 

[President of the World's Congresses held at Chicago in 1893.] 

Dear Sir — Allow me to thank you for your admir- 
able article which appeared in the Revue de Paris, 
upon "A Universal Congress of Religions in 1900." 
That project has given the greatest pleasure to us in 
America who remain faithful to the idea of a universal 
Parliament of Religions. We could but be highly 
gratified by the ability and eloquence with which you 
expound the project of repeating at Paris, at the time 
of the International Exposition which will open the 
twentieth century, the august and soul-stirring mani- 
festation of Chicago in 1893. I am therefore ready to 
give you my best aid and counsel for the organisation 
of the vast enterprise of which you and your friends 
have assumed the difficult task. I have great hopes 
that you may obtain the support of the government of 
your country, as well as of the great religious minds, 
and that your project, in spite of all obstacles, will 
achieve a triumphant success. 

Charles C. Bonney. 

letter of m. negri. 
[Editor of the Perseveranza of Milan.] 

Milan, October 17, 1895. 
Sir — I thank you sincerely for your polite letter, 
and I am happy that you approve of my manner 
of interpreting the grand idea proposed by you. I 
wish you with all my heart success in the accomplish- 
ment of your project, but I do not know enough of 

the dispositions and forces of the religious people in 
France to foresee the result. In Italy, a movement 
such as yours would be received with indifference. 

In Italy the religious sentiment, after the great 
crisis of the Middle Ages, has been stifled by irony 
and scepticism. The papacy of the Renaissance so 
amused Italy that it has killed all seriousness in re- 
ligion. This is the reason why the discipline of Jesu- 
itical orthodoxy is with us all-powerful. Public opin- 
ion follows it blindly from habit, and does not believe 
it worth the trouble to resist. Not finding in it the 
power to do so when religious questions are agitated, 
it reserves by a strange but human contradiction the 
liberty of complacently excommunicating itself in po- 
litical questions. 

But in France the condition of the religious mind 
ought to be very different and favorable to such an 
idea as yours. You will certainly have met with an- 
tagonism, but you work for the future. There is only 
one way to keep alive the religious sentiment in mod- 
ern society, and that is to return to the pure source of 
the Gospel, passing by the rocky and barren moun- 
tains of dogmatic systems. The Gospel is eternally 
young. Can we say the same of all the parasitic 
plants which have overgrown it ? And there is in the 
Gospel a principle of peace and unity in which future 
humanity may retrieve peace of mind. 

I intend to follow with deep interest your efforts 
and work, and shall be happy to announce to my 
countrymen from day to day that you are approaching 
the realisation of the noble idea which you have given 
to the world. Gaston Negri. 


[The well-known scholar and author of Le Temoignage du Christ 
et Punite du monde chreticn.'\ 

Geneva, September 21, 1895. 

Sir — I have just read your article in the Revue de 

I hardly need tell you that I read it with great in- 
terest and emotion. One must have a very superficial 
mind not to accord serious attention to the Parliament 
of Religions at Chicago. I will present to the readers 
of the Journal de Geneve your great project of a Con- 
gress of Religions at Paris, but it necessarily will take 
me some time to arrive at a clear opinion upon so grave 
a matter. 

My ideas upon the unity of the Christian world are 
known to you, since you read my book. The Testimony 
of Christ, with a sympathy, the expression of which I 
appreciate. The unity of the Christian world raises 
other questions and claims, other investigations which 
I shall undertake in the near future with as much 
energy as is left to a man who will complete his eigh- 
tieth year in 1896. Ernest Naville. 


481 1 



" Alles Vergangliche ist nur ein Gleichniss." 

Amiel said with profound significance, "Entangle- 
ment is the condition of life, order and clearness are 
the signs of serious and successful thought." 

Robertson of Brighton, a very tower of liberal 
thought in his day, declared that most arguments are 
verbal arguments. Therefore it becomes the writers 
of The Open Court to define — to define as clearly as 
possible all their positions. 

Coleridge warned us more than two generations 
ago that "when you do not understand an author, 
consider yourself ignorant of his understanding." It 
is in this spirit that I approach some of Dr. Carus's 
recent utterances in his most interesting weekly jour- 
nal, Are not Corvinus and Mr. Thurtell right in their 
accusations of ambiguity? In The Open Court, De- 
cember 12, 1895, Dr. Carus says : "The cardinal point 
on which the difference between the old and the new 
view comes out lies not in the fall of man, but in the 
resurrection of Christ . . . the soul of Jesus has be- 
come, and is even to-day, a living presence in the as- 
pirations of mankind, . . . the moral aspirations of 
Jesus must be impressed into the minds of men. He 
must be resurrected in every heart so as to become 
the dominant power of all impulses, the directive con- 
trol in life, the ultimate motive of all actions." 

Now if we turn to Lord Acton's introductory lec- 
ture at Cambridge upon succeeding Sir John Seeley 
in the chair of Modern History, we find that learned 
man and excellent Catholic, albeit of the Dollinger 
type, declaring that "the influence of Christ who is 
risen upon mankind whom he redeemed has increased 
and is increasing." Would our editor and the Cam- 
bridge Professor agree with regard to the character of 
the influence of Christ upon the world ? Lord Acton 
consistently accepts the so-called supernatural stand- 
point of the churches. Jesus as Son of God, "very 
God of very God," having in very truth, as an histor- 
ical fact, risen from the dead, influences and will for- 
ever influence mankind. But Dr. Carus has utterly 
overthrown the supernatural of the churches, and looks 
upon Jesus as a remarkably endowed Hebrew of hum- 
ble parentage. Renan, in his charming Souvenirs de 
I'enfance et Jeunesse, says (I quote from memory): "I 
felt strongly at that time (i 848-1 849) that the Christ 
would come from Germany, not the person, the indi- 
vidual supernatural being, but the new spirit, the new 
era, the new burst of spiritual life would come from 
the other side of the Rhine." Is there not then just a 
little ambiguity in the way Dr. Carus holds on to the 
individual Christ ? Has he not as a person become a 
little shadowy to many of us ? Has he not become 
the symbol for the "great whatsoevers " of St. Paul? 

Emerson said profoundly, "there are no such men as 
we fable," and again, "so many saints and saviours, 
so many high behaviors" accompany us through life. 
The late Professor Darmesteter's last hope and dream 
was that mankind would return to the glorious trumpet 
notes of the great Hebrew prophets, the burden of 
whose teaching is: "Let righteousness gush forth as 
water and justice as a never-failing stream." In con- 
clusion allow me to quote somewhat at length from a 
notice of Matthew Arnold's letters in the New York 
Evening Post, which may have escaped the notice of 
your readers : 

"We quote these passages because they show Ar- 
nold clinging with his whole soul to the Church and 
his Bible, and at the same time ready to throw over- 
board the doctrines and mysteries of theology, the 
mechanism of ritual, the miracles and thaumaturgy of 
Christianity; even ready to forego the positive belief 
in a personal immortality. . . . The Church remains to 
him an ethical society, — a society for the propagation 
of virtue, the pursuit of righteousness, — but a society 
rooted in immemorial associations, and drawing its 
nourishment largely from a single book and a single 
exemplar of perfect life." 

* * 


[Mr. Blight seems to consider the sentence quoted 
as a statement that refers exclusively to Jesus. The 
meaning of the passage, I hope, will be clear as soon 
as our readers bear in mind that immortality is a com- 
mon attribute of all souls. What we said of the resur- 
rection of Jesus holds good of every other man whose 
aspirations continue to sway mankind. 

By immortality we do not mean the resuscitation 
to life of the body of Jesus. That conception of Christ's 
resurrection has been surrendered even by pious and 
faithful theologians. A resurrection of the body has 
no moral significance, but the implanting of the ideal 
aspirations of a great leader into the hearts of men is 
of paramount importance. 

There can be no doubt that Jesus of Nazareth, who- 
ever he may have been, even if he had existed only in 
the imagination of his followers as a kind of artificial or 
ideal personality, has created a new atmosphere in 
the Western world from the influence of which no one 
can withdraw himself ; and so did Buddha among the 
Eastern nations. Both Buddha and Christ pronounced 
certain ideals which impressed their disciples, who 
went out to preach them to others. Thus the move- 
ment spread over continents, and in every one who 
receives the message and is affected by its noble senti- 
ment, the soul of the master who proclaimed it is re- 
surrected. Christ lives in the Christians ; Buddha 
lives in the Buddhists; Mohammed lives in the Mos- 



This is an immortality which is not diffuse, not a 
pantheistic dissolution into the All-hfe. It is the pre- 
servation of definite thoughts and distinct soul-forms ; 
it is a transference of the most essential features of a 
man, which are impressed into the minds of others in 
the form of word-combinations embodying the char- 
acteristic traits of his great personality. 

In this sense we say that Jesus is a living presence 
in mankind. For what is Jesus if not the sentiments 
which he taught ? The spirit of Jesus lives in his 
words. The same is true of Buddha, and in this sense 
we may claim immortality for all men according to 
their deeds and thoughts, of Kant, of Goethe, of Wash- 
ington, of Lincoln, and on a smaller scale, of every 
blessed soul that plodded through life, attending faith- 
fully to the duties thereof. 

Every moral being leaves a little heritage of bless- 
ings which is an indestructible treasure that no moth 
can eat and no thief can steal. A poor day-laborer's 
wife who in her motherly love patiently attends to the 
drudgery of innumerable annoying household trifles 
and struggles against odds, lives on not only in her 
children and children's children, but in all who are 
affected by her example. 

Nothing that is good is lost ; evil alone leads to 
destruction, for absolute evil is so bad that it cannot 
exist. Absolute evil involves impossibility of existence. 
Immoral conduct, if persisted in, will within three or 
four generations abolish itself ; but the bliss of truth, 
sincerity, and noble deeds lasts forever. — Ed.] 



Back in the seventies, when I was an undergradu- 
ate at Cornell University, Hjalmar Hjorth Boyesen 
suddenly made his appearance at Ithaca as one of the 
professors in the German department. I was a mem- 
ber of his classes and soon became quite well ac- 
quainted with him outside of the recitation-room. The 
malady so prevalent among collegians — cacoethes scri- 
bendi — seized me at about this time, and during the 
Sundays of a month in my sophomore year I amused 
myself by preparing a little sketch of Boyesen at Cor- 

One evening last autumn, a few days after Boye- 
sen's untimely death, I met at the New York Authors' 
Club, Mr. Howells, who, it will be remembered, was 
the "discoverer" of the Norse- American novelist. 
He asked me many questions about Boyesen's six 
years' sojourn at Cornell, which is, it appears, one of 
the less-known periods in his short career. It oc- 
curred to me, therefore, when, the other day I chanced 
upon the manuscript of my college sketch, hidden 
away with other papers in an old box, that it might 

be interesting to give it a corner in your columns ; for 
many of your readers must have known Boyesen 
through his numerous books and magazine articles. 
Here it is, almost exactly as it was written some twenty 
years ago : 

"H. H." once expressed surprise that the author 
of "Gunnar" could find the atmosphere of Cornell 
University congenial. But like many others, who, 
form their opinion concerning this institution without 
visiting it, the gifted poetess does not know that there 
is that about the young, free University on Cayuga 
Lake which exactly chimes in with the fresh liberal 
soul of Boyesen. The grand scenery about Ithaca, 
the many-sided sermons at Sage Chapel, the equality 
of scientific and literary studies, the union in one fac- 
ulty of men of letters and men of science, the mingling 
in the college world of a body of intelligent and culti- 
vated women, a close association of students and pro- 
fessors, and everywhere a general spirit of freedom 
and independence, — all this produces an atmosphere 
not to be found perhaps in any other university centre 
in America, an atmosphere just suited to the intellec- 
tual lungs of the Norse novelist. 

Boyesen the professor does not differ materially 
from Boyesen the author. An aesthetic nature, en- 
thusiasm, refined humor and great breadth of mind 
crop out in his lectures as well as in his romances. 
To these important parts, so seldom found united in 
the teacher, is added that substratum of all successful 
instruction, scholarship. Besides a knowledge of the 
German language and literature and an imbibition of 
the Germanic spirit, due in part to membership in the 
great Teutonic family and in part to a residence at 
Leipsic University, Professor Boyesen is acquainted 
with other languages both ancient and modern, all of 
which are brought to bear on his interpretation of the 
German. It is this Germanic spirit and a mastery of 
English which enables him to transmit to his students 
instruction, artistically interwoven into the dry warp 
of the recitation, and gives a charm to Professor Boye- 
sen's teaching which can be appreciated only by those 
who have listened to him. 

Prof. Boyesen belongs pre-eminently to that very 
small class of teachers of languages who know how to 
make grammar secondary to the poetry of speech, so 
that when a pupil leaves him, he can give not only the 
principal parts of the irregular verbs, but he has be- 
come impregnated with what is much more valuable, 
a lasting love for German literature. The monotonous, 
sleepy, antiquated modes of teaching so universal in 
our colleges years ago and unfortunately still lingering 
here and there, find no counterpart in the varied, wide- 
awake, fresh method adapted by Professor Boyesen. 
He is all life and his enthusiasm is contagious. There 
is nothing narcotic in his lecture-room and his stu- 



dents are never drowsy. If he pronounces the German 
before translating it, the laws of elocution are observed, 
and the true spirit of the passage given. When a 
word in the text suggests an idea, Professor Boyesen 
will suddenly rise from his chair, step from behind the 
desk and walking the floor or standing on the raised 
platform, will pour forth his thoughts, his speech at 
such moments often bordering on true eloquence, and 
his language always displaying force and grace. 

In Schiller's "Wilhelm Tell," he will support with 
great ardor the superiority of the farewell scene be- 
tween Tell and his wife, to that which follows between 
Rudens and Bertha. When he would define a lyric, 
in contradistinction to an epic poet, he employs this 
beautiful simile : "The lyric poet sings the emotions 
springing from his own breast ; but the epic poet is 
like the broad river which reflects in its bosom the 
lofty mountains, branching oaks and tiny flowers that 
it winds among." 

Professor Boyesen has a very refined poetic taste, 
a most aesthetic mind's eye. "Faust" interpreted 
by him is a rare treat. Grammatical questions give 
way to a consideration of the graces of the languages, 
the rhythm of the verse and the deep hidden meaning 
of the poet, while snatches from Goethe's life are dex- 
terously thrown in here and there until the author 
himself becomes identified with his work. 

Professor Boyesen possesses a large fund of humor 
and esprit. He never spoils his bans mots and anec- 
dotes with too much filling, but leaves the imagina- 
tion something to do. He hints at his points. Meet- 
ing one day a passage in " Faust " about the rendering 
of which the critics differ, he remarked, '''Faust,' 
like the Koran and some other good books, admits of 
various interpretations." Referring on another occa- 
sion, during the reading of the " Prologue in Heaven," 
to the suggestions which Goethe had received from 
the Book of Job, he observed: "It always seemed 
odd to me that the Hebraic idea of compensation for 
long suffering was a wife and seven children." After 
a spirited analysis of the character of Mephistopheles, 
Boyesen added : " He is a gentleman who would be 
well received in New York society, and in Boston he 
would be lionised." 

Professor Boyesen's liberalism also displays itself 
in the lecture-room, but never in a way to offend the 
most conservative of his hearers. Though a zealous 
republican in politics, he is not a Jingo ; though a re- 
former, he is not a fanatic ; though an independent 
thinker in religion, he is not an atheist ; and in litera- 
ture and art, while a worshipper of the beautiful, he 
is not a defender of artistic immorality. Broad-minded 
but not extreme in any of his views, his lecture-room 
is pervaded by an air that strengthens, enlarges, and 
elevates the mental and moral nature. 

The artistic faculty, by which I mean not only an 
innate love of the beautiful, but also a technical ac- 
quaintance with the fine arts, is possessed by Profes- 
sor Boyesen in a large degree. This is due chiefly to 
his early association with artists, while a student at 
the University of Christiania, and to his study, at a 
later date of the great masterpieces in the picture- 
galleries of the European capitals. The grand scen- 
ery of his native Norway may have given in youth an 
artistic bent to his mind. But his critical knowledge 
of art was acquired as he sat beside the easels of his 
friends in the University town, or while roaming 
through the Louvre in company with Tourgu^neff. 
Art had such a strong hold upon him at this time that 
he seriously thought for a moment of becoming an art 
critic. He has in his possession several oil-paintings 
which were given him as souvenirs of friendship, on 
parting with his Christiania companions, before sail- 
ing for America. Some of these pictures are of con- 
siderable merit, and one or two of the artists who 
painted them have now won a European reputation. 
But they are valued by their possessor quite as much 
on account of the pleasant memories associated with 
them as for their artistic worth. 

In the South Building of Cornell University, high 
upon East Hill, is a small room commanding a fine 
view of Cayuga Lake to the north and the long valley 
to the south, in the north end of which Ithaca lies 
nestled. An oaken desk and chair, a dozen comfort- 
able benches, five pictures in black walnut frames on 
the neatly papered walls, — such are the main features 
of Boyesen's lecture-room. Three of the pictures are 
photographs of portraits of Goethe, Schiller, and Les- 
sing, another a scene from "Faust," and the fifth a 
small likeness of Tourgu^neff, bearing his sign-man- 
ual, a gift from the Russian novelist to his Norwegian 

In "Cascadilla," the University dormitory build- 
ing. Professor Boyesen has his private apartments. 
From his sitting-room a view can be had of the valley 
but not of the lake. On the walls are hung several 
Norwegian landscapes in oil, and two or three good 
engravings, studies from characters in German litera- 
ture. Two busts of Goethe and Schiller, the former 
from the Trippel cast and the latter from the Da- 
necker, stand on the two bookcases, where is a good 
collection of American poetry, including several vol- 
umes of obscure poets. There is a set of Tourgu^- 
neff's writings, partly in French and partly in German, 
some of the volumes containing the author's auto- 
graph. I believe this is the only complete collection 
of Tourgu^neff's works in this country. A set of 
Heine, Boyesen's favorite poet, is also found on one 
of the shelves. Many of the books are presentation 
copies from well-known authors of Europe and Amer- 



ica. One shelf is filled with standard works on the 
literature of all countries, in various languages, form- 
ing, as it were, a universal history of modern litera- 


Macmillan & Co. are publishing The Modern Reader's Bible 
and we have before us one volume of the series, "The Proverbs, " 
edited with introduction and notes, by Prof. Richard G. Moulton 
of the University of Chicago. As to the plan of the whole series 
Professor Moulton says in his introduction ; " The Modern Read- 
er's Bible does not touch matters of devotion or theology. Its 
purpose is to put forward Biblical works as portions of World Lit- 
erature, with an interest of their own for every variety of reader. 
But if they are to be so appreciated, it is necessary that they 
should be stripped of the mediaeval and anti-literary form in which 
our current Bibles allow them to be obscured." In agreement 
with this maxim Professor Moulton has revised that book of the 
Old Testament which commonly goes by the name of the "Prov- 
erbs of Solomon." 

The reader will be greatly benefited by the explanation of the 
various poetical forms which are employed in this book and also 
by a few instructive hints concerning the philosophical evolution 
that took place in the wisdom literature of ancient Israel. Pro- 
fessor Moulton says : 

"The earlier works, Proverbs and Ecclesiasticus, give us only 
Isolated Observations of life ; these are reflected in brief prov- 
erbs, or in literary forms but little removed from proverbs, and 
each is entirely distinct and complete in itself. The further no- 
tion of the connectedness of all things is not ignored in these 
earlier books, but is looked upon as no subject for reflective anal- 
ysis ; the wise men approach the universe as a whole with feel- 
ings only of adoration, and the philosopher becomes a poet singing 
of this whole as 'Wisdom.' Ecclesiastes marks the pgjj^t, ^biere^ 
for the first time, reflective analysis has been turned upon the sura 
things : the sudden responsibility becomes too great, and phi- 
losophy breaks down in despair. The word 'wisdom' now be- 
comes confined for the most part to lesser achievements, or to the 
observing faculty ; the universal is no longer a unity that can be 
adored, but a broken 'All things,' the attempt to understand which 
is 'vanity.' There is an advance from this position in the latest 
of the books of wisdom, the apocryphal Wisdom of Solomon. 
Here philosophy recovers its tone of rapture ; the recovery is 
made, not by returning to the restricted area of observation, but 
by still further enlarging it. The Preacher had considered only 
this life ; his successor recognises a life beyond the grave, and in 
immortality finds a solution of present mysteries. Whereas the 
Preacher had confined himself to the present, the new wisdom 
adds the past of history, and presents Wisdom as Providence. 
And a single passage — where however the topic is only raised, and 
not followed into detail — shows that this close of Wisdom litera- 
ture extends its observation even from human life to external na- 
ture. Thus these four — Proverbs, Ecclesiasticus, Ecclesiastes, and 
Wisdom of Solomon — make a distinct progression of thought. And 
somewhere in this line of thought — it is needless to discuss exactly 
where — comes the remaining work of Wisdom literature, the Book 
of Job. Here again it is the universe as a whole which is under 
consideration, or at least, its leading problem, the Mystery of 

The book is handy and the whole plan marks a great progress 
in the popularisation of Bible literature. The text is that of the 
revised version. 

Readers interested in the pathology of mind v/ill find a very 
able and instructive article in the July Alienist and Neurologist 

(1895) by Dr. James G. Kiernan, discussing the question whether 
Carlyle was insane or not. Dr. Kiernan, as an alienist and stu- 
dent of literature, decides the question in the negative. 

The January "Monist" 

A Remarkable and Important Number 

"The last number of The Monist is a splendid Qn^."—Prof. Joseph Le 
Conte, University of California. 

"You are making your journal so valuable that I cannot be without it any 
longer, although I do not subscribe to its philosophy. "—f*r^.//.p»ry,F. Osborn, 
Columbia College, N. Y. 

On the Part Played by Accident in Invention and Discovery. 

Prof. Ernst Mach, Vienna. 
Pathological Pleasures and Pains. Prof. Th. Ribot, Paris. 

Chinese Philosophy. Dr. Paul Carus, Editor. 

Germinal Selection. Prof. August Weismann, Freiburg i. B. 

On the Nature 0/ Mathematical Knowledge. Prop. H. Schubert, Hamburg. 
Reviews of tbe most recent and important works in philosophy, science, 
and religion by eminent specialists and scholars, and synopses of the fore- 
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The article of Prof. E. D. Cope {The Open Court, 
January i6) fills me with dismay. 1 cannot help trem- 
bling for the outcome of our discussions, when a man 
of culture can be misled into such statements as, for 
instance, the following : "In endeavoring to carry out 
this policy [Monroe Doctrine] with reference to the 
supposed attempt of Great Britain to seize territory 
belonging to Venezuela, successive administrations 
have been for about eighteen years endeavoring to se- 
cure from the former country her consent to a com- 
mission to arbitrate the question. Our proposition 
has been peaceable, but Great Britain has rejected 
it." Could that assertion be supported by verifiable 
facts it would have a tremendous effect on English 
opinion. Professor Cope may have access to docu- 
ments unknown to the rest of us, but one might sup- 
pose they would be known to the Secretary of State, 
and that he could hardly have omitted reference to 
them while making out his indictment of England in 
July last. Eighteen years ! According to Mr. Olney's 
history our Government's first communication to Eng- 
land on the subject seems to have been made ten years 
ago, and it was not a proposal for arbitration at all, 
for both England and Venezuela desired arbitration : 
the dispute was between their respective schemes of 
arbitration, and on this our Government offered Eng- 
land its "mediation." It was only eight years ago 
that we even mentioned arbitration to England, and 
then not specifically: the desire was expressed "to 
see the Venezuelan dispute amicably -and honorably 
settled by arbitration or otherwise." (My italics.) 
England is given no reason to suppose that we pre- 
ferred "arbitration" to a settlement "otherwise." 
And where does Professor Cope find our proposal of a 
"commission"? The dispute between Venezuela and 
England being between their different plans of arbi- 
tration, our Government in 1890 assured Great Brit- 
ain of its "neutrality" on the question, and proposed 
a "conference" between the two disputants and her- 
self. The breaking off by Venezuela of all relations 
with England made the acceptance of that plan dififi- 
cult, and though in July, 1894, the United States pro- 
posed arbitration it did not take the ground that Eng- 

land should surrender its restricted plan of arbitration 
for the plan of Venezuela ; nor was it urged as a mat- 
ter of political importance to the United States. Pro- 
fessor Cope would have been nearer the mark had he 
said eighteen months instead of eighteen years, but 
even that would convey an erroneous impression, for 
it was only at the close of last summer that the 
Venezuelan scheme of arbitration was insisted on, and 
connected with our United States " Doctrine " and 
policy. Whether this new attitude might not have 
been effective had it been courteously stated, who can 
tell? But it was a demand accompanied by menaces 
and claims that rendered acceptance impossible, e. g. : 
"That distance and three thousand miles of interven- 
ing ocean make any permanent political union be- 
tween a European and an American State unnatural 
and inexpedient will hardly be denied." Thus Eng- 
land finds a specific scheme of arbitration, selected by 
her opponent, suddenly adopted by our President, and 
instead of being proposed "peaceably," put as an an- 
gry demand, to which, apart from its dictatorial char- 
acter, emphasised by our Commission, she cannot 
yield without agreeing that her tenure of any territory 
at all in the New World is "unnatural and inexpe- 

It will be observed that Professor Cope's unsub- 
stantiated assertion that the President's message, 
whose "inflammatory" character he does not den)', 
was preceded by about eighteen years of " peaceable " 
endeavors to secure England's consent to a commis- 
sion for arbitration, is not a mere incidental point in 
his article : it is fundamental, and it is vital ; it should 
either be withdrawn or proved by the Professor. For 
on this really rests his whole position, that the Mon- 
roe Doctrine is possibly involved, and that this is the 
real issue with England. On this ground he slights 
Professor James's reproof of the unconciliatory form 
of the executive action, and says, "all parties will for- 
get the matter of form when they get to considering 
the questions involved, in a serious and rational frame 
of mind." But the more seriously and rationally the 
matter is considered, the more plainly does it appear 
that in this as in many other cases form and substance 
are one. By the form in which our administration has 
put the matter upon England, the interests of Vena- 



zuela have been Supplanted, and the Monroe Doctrine 
buried away, under a totally new issue, viz., whether 
England has any right at all to her American colonies, 
any of them, or whether she is to administer her af- 
fairs under our presidential suzerainty, with fear and 
trembling? It is the "serious and rational" consider- 
ation of the situation which has gradually revealed 
the formidable fact that the English government has 
been thus left no freedom of initiative. 

The editor of The Open Court, in his able article 
on the Monroe Doctrine, quotes President Monroe as 
saying, "With the existing colonies of any European 
power we have not interfered, and shall not inter- 
fere"; but our executive makes it a condition of ac- 
ceptance of arbitration that she shall admit her Amer- 
ican connexions " unnatural and inexpedient." Her 
consent to arbitration she could not now offer without 
proclaiming that fear induces her to yield to menaces 
of a strong power what she had denied to a weak one. 
Did those who put the matter in that "form " intend 
that the dispute with Venezuela should, in the lan- 
guage of our Secretary in 1888, be "amicably and 
honorably settled by arbitration"? What language 
could have been devised by Secretary Olney to pre- 
vent any acceptance of our demand that should not 
involve a total, timid, and dishonorable surrender by 
England? It appears incredible that the President 
should have deliberately meant to force upon Eng- 
land the alternatives of surrender under menace or 
war, or that he could be so ignorant of English his- 
tory as to imagine that the alternative of national hu- 
miliation would be even conceivable. "The President 
of the United States," said the Rt. Hon. John Morley 
in his speech yesterday, "might have known that to 
claim the right of the United States Government to 
enforce any settlement that they might choose in any 
dispute between Great Britain and any South Ameri- 
can Government was a demand to which no country 
with ordinary self-respect could be expected to listen." 
Did the President, then, really expect it ? 

This raising by our Government of an issue entirely 
distinct from the Monroe Doctrine renders the situa- 
tion so grave that surely public teachers should weigh 
their words strictly ; and I must submit, Mr. Editor, 
that in speaking of Lord Salisbury's "cool refusal of 
his [the President's] offer of arbitration in the Vene- 
zuelan question," you might fairly have added that it 
was rather an alternative proposal of arbitration. This 
alternative offer by the Premier might surely have 
been courteously dealt with before the President's 
thunderbolt-message was launched ; and if this limited 
arbitration had been agreed to it could hardly have 
failed to elicit the facts which our Commission is seek- 
ing, and bring to light anything untenable in the claims 
of Great Britain even to lands settled by her subjects. 

Even after Secretary Olney's insulting despatch. Lord 
Salisbury reminds him that Her Majesty's government 
have "repeatedly expressed their readiness to submit 
to arbitration the conflicting claims of Great Britain 
and Venezuela to large tracts of territory which, from 
their auriferous nature, are known to be of almost un- 
told value." 

To your historical remark that the Monroe Doc- 
trine originated in "the suggestion of a great English 
statesman " it may be added that it has never been 
repudiated by an English statesman, and that Lord 
Salisbury, while reminding our Government that it is 
not international law, expressed his adhesion to Mon- 
roe's principle, " that any disturbance of the existing 
territorial distribution in the Western hemisphere by 
any fresh acquisitions on the part of any European 
State would be a highly inexpedient change." (Lord 
Salisbury was too polite to remind us that the Doc- 
trine is not even American law, and that until it is 
framed in exact law it is open to any administration 
to commit our country to any perversion of it that the 
current jingoism may invent.) Yesterday the Premier 
reiterated emphatically his concurrence with Monroe, 
and his leading ministers have as publicly done the 
same. An opposition leader, the Rt. Hon. John Mor- 
ley, proclaimed Thursday : "There is no longer any 
dispute as to the usual acceptance by Great Britain 
of that Doctrine. Mr. Balfour, Mr. Chamberlain, Sir 
Michael Hicks Beach — have all said in the frank- 
est way, that leaves nothing to be desired, that they 
accept that Doctrine. . . . The Americans may take it 
for certain that to that Doctrine there is no demur in 
anybody's mind in this country." 

To the question of the applicability of the Monroe 
Doctrine to the Venezuelan dispute, Professor Cope 
answers "we do not certainly know," and until we do 
"all confident assertions are premature." Let the 
Professor read again Mr. Olney's despatch, and say 
whether it was not premature to insult England, to 
put words into her mouth never uttered, to accuse her 
of bullying Venezuela because it was weak, and all the 
while without knowing whether England is not in the 
right. It may be said that this was because England 
refused the particular extent of arbitration which we 
desired ; but that is a petitio principti: the Commis- 
sion may decide that she was right in refusing arbi- 
tration concerning lands which she says were in her 
possession before Venezuela existed. All of this 
knowledge might have been searched out as well be- 
fore Mr. Olney's " confident assertions " as after them. 
Was it not "premature" to demand of England a dif- 
ferent kind of arbitration from that she offered, and to 
demand it with menaces, when we are not even yet 
certain that she is not right ? The United States 
would not submit to arbitration anything she deemed 



vital, nor would we submit to have our right to accept 
or refuse arbitration determined for us by another 
power. If the foreign power is apprehensive that the 
issue on which arbitration is declined is an issue vitally 
affecting itself, it has an equal right to decide for it- 
self, but it has been the usage among civilised nations 
to make their inquiries and reach their conclusions 
before making accusations that may prove unfounded, 
or warlike proclamations that deprive peoples of free 
will, and may have to be either revoked with shame 
or fulfilled with both shame and crime. 

I have pointed out one momentous statement by 
Professor Cope (whom I esteem) which appears to re- 
quire substantiation or withdrawal. There are others 
that might be questioned, but I must limit myself to a 
comment on his remark that the "privileged classes " 
in England " hate America and everything American. " 
Now it is the privileged classes that find most to ad- 
mire in American institutions. Several noblemen, 
among them Lord Salisbury and the late Lord Ten- 
nyson, have particularly applauded parts of our Con- 
stitution, and proposed to adopt especially our method 
of preventing hasty changes in the organic law. 

I do not know whether Professor Cope has visited 
England or not, but I have resided here man}' years, 
and have mingled with all classes, and my confident 
testimony is that America has not one single enemy in 
England, and that friendship for America and for 
Americans is a chief characteristic of this people, per- 
vading every class of society. And if among the thou- 
sands of loyal Americans resident in England there is 
one who would testify otherwise, I have never heard 
of him. 



Mr. Conway's criticism of my article on the "Mon- 
roe Doctrine in 1895," in No. 438 of The Open Couri, 
shows how easily a man's environment may color the 
view which he takes of questions which involve the 
personal element. He finds that the fault in this dis- 
pute does not rest with the people among whom he 
lives, but with the government of the United States. 
He also believes, apparently, that the aristocratic 
caste of Englishman is friendly to the United States and 
to Americans. He says that our Government has not 
been negotiating with that of Great Britain for eigh- 
teen years, but for ten years only ; and that it pro- 
posed arbitration at a still more recent date, having 
proposed mediation in the earlier stages of the discus- 

I find the difference between mediation and arbi- 
tration to be unimportant in this connexion. They 
are practically identical, and the relation of the affair 
to the Monroe Doctrine is the same in either case. 

Nor do I think that the difference between ten years 
and eighteen years of refusal to listen to our sugges- 
tions on the part of the British Government is suffi- 
cient to seriously' affect the situation. The plain fact 
remains that Lord Salisbury refused consistently for 
man}' years to submit the question to an arbitration 
or mediation, and professed to regard the relations of 
Great Britain to Venezuela in the matter, as not com- 
ing within the scope of the Monroe Doctrine. This 
transparent subterfuge was properly rebuked by our 
administration. For all that appeared nothing but 
the vigorous language of the President and Secretary 
of State, would have roused Lord Salisbury from his 
indifference, and awakened him to the fact that the 
Monroe Doctrine is not a mere form of words. A 
good many other people were awakened at the same 
time, and among them Mr. Conway. The awakening 
was somewhat rude, but it seems to have been neces- 

As to the friendship of the privileged classes of 
England for Americans, I supposed that the reader 
would understand that the "hatred" to which I re- 
ferred is not of the personal sort. We may hate the 
institutions of a country without personally hating the 
people. It is a common form of mental obliquity to 
suppose that hatred of a man's ideas necessarily sig- 
nifies hatred of him personally. Englishmen hate 
Americans personally for the same reasons that Eng- 
lishmen hate each other, where they are so unfortunate 
as to entertain such sentiments; and Americans do 
the same, mutatis muta7idis. I do not believe that there 
is any international hatred between the two English- 
speaking nations. But to suppose that the aristocratic 
caste in England has any friendship for American in- 
stitutions is to think in the face of history, of expe- 
rience, and of common sense. I suppose that many 
Americans who, like myself, believe our form of gov- 
ernment is in the main the best, have, like myself, 
many warm friends in England, and much admiration 
for particular Englishmen and certain English insti- 



The Curator of the Burlington Fine Arts Club of 
London, England, recently received a consignment of 
exquisite lacquered ware from Japan. Upon search- 
ing through his treasures to find if there was anything 
newer, or more fascinating than usual among them, 
he lighted upon a quantity of lacquered boxes from six 
inches to a foot square, and when he opened one of 
them he found a veritable surprise in store. They 
were samples of the Japanese "Game of Perfumes." 
The lacquering had been done by the great Japanese 
artists of the eighteenth century, Komas, Kajikawas, 
and Shunshos. 



The incrusted illustrations on the covers of these 
boxes referred mostly to mediasval tales of Japanese 
chivalry, such as the Oriental scholar discovers blaz- 
oned through the romances of Genji Monogatari. The 
contents consisted of tiny receptacles full of fragrant 
wood of various descriptions ; of a minute brazier ; 
of a silver spatula ; and of a silver-plated mica platter. 
There were also a few pieces of carefully prepared 
charcoal, and a very considerable number of daintily 
designed counters accompanying each box — each cor- 
responding in name to a certain one of the perfumes 
to be burned. 

The game was thus begun. One of the incense- 
bearing jars was emptied of a small part of its con- 
tents (by means of the silver spatula) on to the silver- 
plated mica platter. A piece of charcoal was then in- 
serted in the brazier and lighted, and while it was 
burning the silver platter containing the incense was 
suspended by its handle over the flame until the fumes 
of incense permeated the air. 

The point of the game (which could be partici- 
pated in by any number of people who could sit around 
the table comfortably) was to guess the name of the 
perfume consumed, choose out the counter correspond- 
ing to it, and put it in its proper place on a checker- 
board, which also accompanied each box. 

It is clear that the Japanese were more skilled in 
distinguishing odors than the inhabitants of modern 
western lands. 

Incense was first brought into Japan by Buddhist 
missionaries in the sixth century. They came, no 
doubt, from any one of the various Tatar Lamasaries 
in Thibet, or beyond. The earliest mention that I 
can unearth from Japanese literature of this "incense 
game " occurs in the tenth century, among the Genji 
Monogatari romances already referred to. It was not, 
however, until the close of the fifteenth century, which 
marks the most flourishing era of the Japanese renais- 
sance that this "incense game" was most in vogue. 
It was at this period in Japanese history that the 
olfactory sense or the sense of smell was raised to the 
level of a fine art. 

In searching for a similar condition of affairs in 
other parts of the globe, I find that Didron, the French 
archaeologist, describes in one of his works a Brittany 
peasant who came to Paris with a cabinet of drawers 
ingeniously devised which he called a "perfume har- 
monium." He intended to give a concert of odors 
therewith, but the intelligence of that gay capital was 
not sufficiently advanced to afford him a remunerative 
audience ; he was generally daubed as a crazy man, 
and went home with considerable experience and very 
little money. 

The evidences of the wide existence of a taste for 
odors in ancient civilisations is patent in many direc- 

tions. The early people of the globe seemed to regard 
the gods who had gone before them as even more 
amenable than themselves to this kind of pleasure. 
We all remember the thick clouds of flesh-smell from 
the burning sides of the oxen which were thought to 
appease the hunger of the gods in Homer's "Iliad" 
and "Odyssey." And Milton gives the custom an 
even hoarier antiquity when he speaks of the delights 
of travellers when 

" off at sea north-east winds blow 
Sabean odors from the spicy shore 
Of Araby the blest." 

The blind poet also tells in this same "Paradise 
Lost " how well pleased Satan was with the odorous 
sweets of Paradise, and how Asmodeus was driven 
from the spouse of Tobit's son by fishy fumes. 

The prevalence of incense burning in all ages of 
the Roman Catholic Church and the costly and ancient 
thuribles still extant, as relics of the early universality 
of th6 custom, are known to the public at large. At 
the present day, outside of church ritual it is only in 
the toilet of women that the art lives. 

But the subject has an exceedingly interesting 
physiological bearing. The sense of smell is only 
vestigial in man at the present day. And yet such an 
eminent physiologist as Michael Foster points out in 
the last edition of his work on physiology that the 
olfactory nerves, or those nerves which carry the sense 
of smell to the smell-centre in the brain (behind the 
fissure of Rolando) have the most direct connexion 
with their centre of any of the sensory nerves in man, 
or, in other words, that the nervous system in man is 
so constituted as to carry such olfactory sensations by 
an unusually direct course to the brain. 

The "end organs" of olfaction are the hair cells 
on the mucus surfaces of the nose, which present very 
much the same appearance as the hair-cells in the 
cochlea of the ear, as the organ of Corti in the internal 
ear, and as the "rods and cones" in the retina. All 
of these end-organs of sense bear a very close resem- 
blance, in extreme miniature of course, to the arrange- 
ment of some great minster organ. All of them are 
evidently intended to produce their effect, not by a 
single stroke or impulse, of sense ; but by a harmony 
thereof. So that the poor Brittany peasant who laid 
all his plans to lead in bondage the noses of a Parisian 
audience was either far ahead of his time, or else very 
far behind it. 

Certain drugs produce faintness or dizziness, when 
held to the nose and inhaled, and others, such as ni- 
trite of amyl and hydrocyanic acid kill by the intensity 
of their olfactory effect upon the brain-centres. Death 
is caused by paralysis of the heart. This is another 
proof of the new physiological fact that every sense- 
centre in the brain is connected, not only with the 
higher intellectual centres, but also with the motor 



centres in the cortex of the cerebrum. Anj'thing, 
therefore, which has an annihilating effect, so to speak, 
upon any one centre of sense is as the arms of Sam- 
son, which pulled down the whole temple on his j^iead 
with the crumbling of two of its pillars. In fact, the 
better conception we have of the idea that the brain 
consists of an endless number of cells (with different 
functions), connected with each other by an endless 
number of nerve-fibres or wires (all of which are con- 
ductors only), the better we will be able to understand 
the rnison d'etre of that much misunderstood organ. 

In the lower vertebrates, and by this I mean in all 
those animals which have a backbone, but which are 
lower in the scale of evolution than man, the size of 
the olfactory lobes in the brain is inordinate. They 
form the very fore front of the nervous system in all 
such ascending types. It is only in the "heir of all 
the ages " man that these lobes are masked by the 
cerebral convolutions in which he transacts his dis- 
tinguishing function of the association of sensation 
and thought. Even in man himself the nerve (con- 
sisting of its bundle of myriad fibres) which carries the 
sensations of smell to his brain, is nerve No. i in the 
cerebral spinal system of nomenclature. 

When we descend to the dog, the whole face of 
the case changes, and we find, in hunting-dogs par- 
ticularly, a vast preponderance of olfactory lobes over 
the rest of their brain. What would such a dog be 
without his _/?««>? All of which goes to prove, what I 
have elsewhere insisted upon, that the brain of the 
dog, as well as that of the idiot and of the normally 
intelligent child, are all capable of an endless amount 
of development. Development dependent upon two 
things only : — the period of brain-growth at which the 
process of artificial education is begun, and the length 
of time allowed to the educator in which to perfect his 

If the hunting-dog's sense of smell has been de- 
veloped to such a marvellous extent that he is able to 
remember the smell of his master's hat, and extract it 
from a pile of rubbish were it has lain for ten years, 
it becomes a by no means impossible thought that a 
similar amount of time and care spent in developing 
a dog's vocal chords and increasing the number of 
cells in his centre of speech, would enable him to talk 
with those whom he serves so well. Just as the child, 
deaf and dumb at birth, whose vocal chords and 
speech centres are not a whit better developed than 
those of the dog, learns after six or seven years' edu- 
cation to use that speech centre and those vocal chords 
as well as the rest of us. 

And if men in olden times did derive an ecstasy of 
sense from the deft mingling of odors — the harmony 
of odors — there is no reason in the world why a spe- 
cial education of smell-centres equivalent to that which 

is given to the deaf and dumb child should not render 
what is now practically a lost sense, a source of the 
highest emotional pleasure to its possessor. 

No one doubts that a man can think. A great 
many people do hold that a dog cannot. But when I 
tell them that it has been shown beyond a peradven- 
ture that crows can count as high as five or six, that 
nightingales can do almost as well, and that Professor 
Lubbock taught one dog to find the square root of 
certain numbers, and another dog to tell him (not by 
his voice, but by choosing out cards) when he wanted 
food and when he wanted drink and when he wanted 
to go out and run — when all these facts are understood, 
I hope that we shall come to believe that man is not 
such an exclusive being after all, compared with his 
dumb servants, and that if we only gave them a chance 
they might exceed our wildest imaginings in the way 
of mental improvement. If mental improvement ren- 
dered them no less true to their master, what invalu- 
able friends we might make of them. 

Helen Kellar, the deaf, dumb, and blind girl, who 
has been rendered famous by the triumph of special 
sense-development over her infirmities, and is now 
completing her education in a private school for the 
deaf in New York City, shows an unusual develop- 
ment of the sense of smell. The gentleman who is 
instructing her tells me that she is always conscious 
of the presence of another person, no matter how 
noiseless his entrance into the room in which she is 
at the time being. He explains this knowledge by the 
acuteness of her sense of smell. She is able to detect 
presence by odor. 

Another case of much the same kind is now living 
in the person of a man who resides in one of the towns 
on the Hudson River in New York State. He is deaf 
and blind, and uses his sense of smell to recognise 
and distinguish those with whom he comes in contact. 

Upon first introduction he takes hold of the hand 
of the person so presented and sniffs at it with his 
nose, just as the dog seems to gather with his sensi- 
tive nostrils and store in his mind every scent that is 
in the breeze. 

Having thus firmly established the identity of the 
odor peculiar to this individual, the man in question 
is able to recognise the person when he or she passes 
in the street at moderately close quarters. 

This manifest possibility of the extreme develop- 
ment of the sense of smell reminds me of the famous 
James Mitchell, whose case is reported in medical 
works. This boy was born blind and deaf, and lost 
very early in life the finer qualities of his sense of 
touch, as well as of his general sensation. But to 
make up for this universal affliction, he developed in 
time a flair equal in many respects to that possessed 
by the best breed of pointers and setters. Each per- 



son that he met was individuahsed in his memory by 
odor, and he was able to draw sharp distinctions in 
this way between various people. Nay, more, from 
their odor it became possible for him to form excellent 
opinions of their respective character. The olfactory 
centres in this boy must have been unusually devel- 


Speaking of Christian critics of Buddhism, we 
must not forget to mention the Rev. Charles Gutzlaff, 
a German missionary to China, who enjoys an unde- 
served reputation for scholarship among people un- 
acquainted with his writings. His two-volumed work, 
China Opened,^ is full of the grossest errors, which are 
scarcely pardonable in an illiterate man who lived only 
a short time in the Middle Kingdom. Note only this 
tremendous mistake : Speaking of Confucius, who, as 
is well known, was not an original thinker or author, 
but a conservative preserver of the wisdom of the 
sages of yore, Gutzlaff says : 

"Antecedent to him, China does not appear to have possessed 
any men of genius ; or if it did possess them, both themselves and 
their works have long passed into oblivion." 

As though Fu Hi, Yii the Great, Wu Wang, Wen 
Wang, and innumerable other sages, among them 
Lao-tsze, who were born before Confucius, had either 
not existed or passed into oblivion ! The Shu King is 
a collection of songs, all of which are older than Con- 

Other blunders, such as attributing to Confucius 
himself the well-known classic on filial piety, which is 
written either by Tsang-tsze or by a scholar belonging 
to the school of Tsang-tsze, are scattered throughout 
Gutzlaff' s book. 

Gutzlaff pretends to have read books of which he 
knows very little. In explanation of Lao-tsze's term 
tau (reason, logos, path), he says : 

" Commentators differ as to the meaning of this word. We 
cite the opinions only of the two most celebrated of them. Ac- 
cording to the best author, Taou is the art of governing a coun- 
try; but another observes, that the Taou is shapeless, or invisible, 
and maintains and nourishes heaven and earth. It is devoid of 
affection, but moves the sun and moon ; it is nameless, but con- 
tributes towards the growth and sustenance of all creatures. It 
is something undefined, to which it is difficult to assign a name, 
which however may be called Taou, for want of a better." 

Gutzlaff does not name these " two most celebrated 
commentators," for it is one of his habits never to 
quote authorities or to give references. But any one 
who ever glanced through this short booklet could not 
have overlooked that these "opinions" are simply 
loose and inaccurate quotations from Lao-tsze's Tao- 

1 London: Smith, Elder, & Co. 1838. The author's name is spelled 
"Gutzlaff" in the English edition. The German spelling is "GOtzlaff." 

Mr. Meadows, Chinese interpreter in H. M. Civil 
Service, in his book. The Chinese and Their Rebellions, 
is not too severe on Gutzlaff, when he says (p. 376) : 

" Pfobably few men have excelled Dr. Gutzlaff in the capacity 
for rapidly inditing sentences containing a number of propositions 
not one of which should be correct. In fact all his labors are 
characterised by a superficiality, a lack of thorough research, and 
a profusion of unfounded assertion." 

Gutzlaff' s opinions on China and Buddhism would 
certainly not be worth mentioning if he were not 
sometimes regarded and quoted as an authority whose 
statements are willingly accepted on account of his 
supposed scholarship and long residence in China. 

Gutzlaff devotes a long chapter to religion ; speak- 
ing of Buddhism, he says : 

"The life of the founder of this idolatry is enveloped in so 
much mystery, that his very existence has been doubted by some, 
whilst others have presumed, that there lived and taught, at differ- 
ent periods, various persons of this name." 

"His name greatly varies according to the countries where 
his tenets have been received. Thus we have it pronounced 
Budha, Budhu, Budse, Gautema, Samonokodam, Fuh, or Fo, etc , 
all designating one and the same individual." 

As if the title Buddha, the Enlightened One, were 
a name, and of the same kind as " Gautama "! Gutz- 
laff continues : 

" He inculcated mercy towards animals, prohibited the killing 
of any living creature, and enjoined good-will towards all man- 
kind. His disciples wrote down these instructions, which, inclu- 
sive of the commentaries, amounted to two hundred and thirty- 
two volumes. The writer has perused several of them in the 
Siamese Pale, and if ever any work contained nonsense, it is the 
religious code of Budhu." 

Siamese can only be the language spoken in Siam, 
and Pale (or as it is now commonly spelled Pali) is 
the vernacular spoken in the kingdom of Maghada in 
Buddha's time, which has become the classical lan- 
guage of Buddhism. What Siamese Pali may be, no 
one except the Rev. Mr. Gutzlaff knows. 

Gutzlaff continues in the next paragraph, "his 
[Buddha's] own uncle rose against him," probably 
meaning Devadatta, his cousin. He further says: 

"The most superficial observer will discover in this system 
some resemblance to a spurious kind of Christianity. If we do 
not admit that the human mind will always have recourse to the 
same follies, we may presume that these ceremonies were bor- 
rowed from the Nestorians of the seventh century, a period which 
exactly coincides with a great reform in the Tibetian system of 

"The providence of God, in permitting so many millions 
blindly to follow this superstition, is indeed mysterious. We can 
only adore where we are unable to comprehend. Yet, amongst 
all pagans, the Budbuists are the least bigoted. They allow that 
other religions contain some truth, but think that their own is the 
best, and the most direct road to heaven. Amongst the myriads of 
idols they worship, there are no obscene representations, nor do 
they celebrate any orgies." 

We do not doubt that Chinese Buddhism is full of 
distortions and superstitions, but even here we find 



still preserved the purity, the breadth, and the moral 
earnestness of the great founder of the Religion of 

The Buddhistic description of Hell, as given by 
Gutzlaff on page 224, differs from the old-fashioned 
Christian Hell only in unimportant details, and the in- 
junction to repeat the refuge formula, O me to Fuh! 
on all occasions for the sake of "having Fuh both in 
the mind and in the mouth," is quite analogous to the 
constant repetition of the Lord's Prayer, which is 
practised in all Christian countries. The worship of 
Fuh, as prescribed by various sects, is neither more 
nor less pagan than the worship of Christ among 
Christians. Gutzlaff quotes from a Buddhist work, 
the title of which he does not name, the following 
passage : 

"Let each seek a retired room, and sweep it clean; place 
there an image of Fuh, every day burn a pot of pure incense, 
place a cup of clean water, and when evening comes, light a lamp 
before the image, Whether painted on paper, or carved in wood, 
the figure is just the same as the true Fuh ; let us love it as our 
father and mother, venerate it as our prince and ruler. Morning 
and evening, let us worship it with sincerity and reverence, fall 
prostrate before it like the tumbling of a mountain, and rise up 
with dignity like the ascent of clouds. On leaving the room, re- 
port it [bid it farewell] ; returning, let us give notice [greet it] ; 
and even when we travel, at the distance of five or ten le, let us 
act as in the presence of our Fuh." 

Among other extracts from "native works," Gutz- 
laff quotes the following passage : 

"The laws of Budhuism are boundless as the ocean, and the 
search after them is as little tiresome as that after precious stones. 
He who has transgressed them ought to repent ; he who never 
acted against them may silently ponder upon them, and thus 
know the purity of exalted virtue." 

Happening to know this verse as a formula in 
common use among the Chinese and Japanese Bud- 
dhists, I can from memory point out a few gross mis- 
takes in Gutzlaff's translation, without even having at 
present the original at hand. It must read about as 
follows : 

" The religion of Buddha is as boundless as the ocean. 
The search after it is more remunerative than that after precious 

He who has transgressed Buddha's injunctions ought to repent. 
He who has never sinned, may in silence ponder upon them. 
Thus he will comprehend the purity of exalted virtue." p. c. 


It is interesting to watch the attitudes of different people when 
a new discovery has been made. Some belittle it, others claim to 
have known it long ago, and still others let their imagination revel 
in wild speculations. Thus iVature, the well-known English jour- 
nal of natural science, after publishing a short note (in No. 1368) 
stating what Professor Rontgen claims to have done, publishes (in 
No. 1369) an article which begins as follows : 

"The newspaper reports of Professor Rontgen's experiments 
have, during the past few days, excited considerable interest. 
The discovery does not appear, however, to be entirely novel, as " 
etc., etc. 

Further, we read in other reports that Riintgen's discovery is 
due to mere accident. This is true, for Rontgen makes this state- 
ment himself. There is an element of accident in all discoveries, 
but it shows the stamp of genius to comprehend the importance 
and novelty of an accident, and to trace the law which underlies 
its appearance. 

It is peculiar to find a great number of people who have dis- 
covered the Rontgen rays before Rontgen. But as soon as their 
claim is investigated it vanishes in thin air. We mention as an 
instance an essay by Dr. Heinrich Kraft of Strassburg, which 
appeared in one of the greatest Frankfort journals, and was re- 
printed and quoted in others. 

Dr. Kraft claims that his countryman, Reichenbach, had an- 
ticipated Rontgen in his discovery of the "od," made in 1845, 
which, however, by Du Bois-Rej;mond was branded as one of the 
dreariest aberrations of the human brain and as a worthless fable. 
And what is this " od " ? It is an all-pervading energy which ought 
not to be mixed up with light, heat, magnetism, or electricity. 
Not finding an odometre or an odoscope, Reichenbach relied upon 
the information received from so-called sensitives, but as the sen- 
sitives are few and the non-sensitives many, says Dr. Kraft, Rei- 
chenbach was ridiculed and his last hope, that of being recognised 
by Fechner, failed. Thus he died a martyr to his convictions ; 
but Rontgen, thirty years after his death rediscovers his "od" 
and makes it known to the world under the name of ".r-rays." 
As the " od " permeates all solid substances, even rocks and met- 
als, so the ^-rays pass through wood, walls, books, and the human 
organism, and for this reason Dr. Kraft declares that Rontgen's 
great merit consists in having found an intensifier of the "od," 
and an odoscope. The Rontgen rays, he concludes, ought to be 
called " od-rays." 

Every one who knows anything about the actual facts of Riint- 
gen's discovery, will object at once that Rontgen's .»'-rays have 
nothing to do with, and do not prove the reality of, an all-pervad- 
ing substance such as Reichenbach describes his "od. " 

But what will the spiritists and their kin say of the new in- 
vention ? They appear to be a little slow in utilising the new dis- 
covery for their purposes, but they will do so without fail. They 
will find explanations for the appearance and disappearance of 
psychic effects, of spirit photographs, of telepathy, and of all the 
various miracles with the investigation of which they are engaged. 
In a word, the Rontgen rays will soon be famous among them as 
the paths upon which the spirits walk. 



To the Editor of The Open Court : 

Why not open the door of your Open Court and keep it wide 
open, in fact remove the hinges, the door, and permit all to go in 
and out while the " Court" is open. I do not care to mount the 
platform, the "bench," if you please, I will speak from the floor, 
and to the effect if you will permit, that wiser words were never 
written than the caustic, timely, true analysis of the American 
State by Mr. Conway. I read his article, " Our Cleveland Christ- 
mas, "with interest and approval. The two following were not 
relished by me, particularly so the effort by the editor. — with par- 
don and the kindest regard for him. Mr. Conway, in my opin- 
ion, builds for a noble State for man, enduring temples of justice. 
May his voice again and again be heard in your much esteemed 
Open Court. I. A. Lant. 

Tarrytown, N. Y. 

To the Editor of the Open Court: 

You will see by reference to what I sent you, that I did not 
say Jefferson's letter was to Mr. Rusli but to Mr. Monroe. Rush 



was in England, and of course did not communicate Canning's 
proposition to any one but the President. He, Mr. Monroe, after 
deliberating over the matter in his cabinet, sent all letters and 
documents to Jefferson at Monticello. The response from Jeffer- 
son I sent you. Please correct in The Open Court, as just now, 
and indeed always, what we need in all investigation is accuracy. 
I do not think you made a mistake in publishing Conway's 
hysterical article. If Americans of note are thinking after this 
manner, it is high time we knew it. The remedy must come, as 
Aristotle said, by "going back to first principles." The question 
is, was not Jefferson right, that a people that has its roots in so 
much history must make history a very large part of popular 
education ? Yet here we were so totally ignorant of Canning's 
great strategic move in statesmanship — tlie greatest political event 
of this nineteenth century— ^hat we supposed the Monroe Doc- 
trine meant a defiance of all the world to secure an area of land 
on the Western Hemisphere. E. P. Powell. 

To the Editor of The Open Court: 

Perhaps it is forwardness on my part, bnt I beg that you may 
not consider it forwardness in an Englishman who is deeply grieved 
to read that there is antipathy to his country in America, and 
who, though he has experienced friendship from many Americans, 
has no correspondent in the States, if I venture to write that I for 
one see no reason why all questions reasonably connected with the 
Venezuela boundary should not be referred to arbitration. 

It is not true that the decision in all arbitrations has been 
given against this country. 

I can't help thinking that if we had done what seems to me 
our duty to the persecuted Armenians, we should have been more 
respected as well as loved. T. W. 


Dr. HansVaihinger, Professor of Philosophy at the University 
of Halle, a. S., announces a new periodical Kantstudien, which 
will be devoted to the investigation and elucidation of Kant's 
works. Professor Vaihinger urges that all philosophers after Kant 
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and also those who went beyond him ; and there is scarcely any 
problem of modern thought, the discussion of which does not nat- 
urally lead back to Kant, which involves that very frequently the 
discussion of a subject is nothing but a coming to terms with 
Kant. In this sense Kant has rightly been called "the key to 
modern philosophy." Professor Vaihinger is better fitted than 
any one else for this undertaking, because he has done more than 
any other scholar in the line of Kant investigation. The Kant- 
studien promises to inquire into the circumstances and psychologi- 
cal conditions of Kant's philosophy, and will also give an inter- 
pretation of its substance both in its entirety and its details. 

In order to preserve the international character of the under- 
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tributions in their own languages. 

The new magazine will be a complement to the new Kant 
edition, to be published by the Royal Academy of Sciences in 
Berlin, which is now in preparation. 

The Kantstudien will contain: (i) original contributions of 
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cording to the demand of the present time ; (2) reviews of all kinds 
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Prof. Ernst Mach. Vie-nr 
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No. 444. (Vol. X,-9 ) 


Copyright bv The Open Court Publishing Co. — Reprints are permitted only on condition of giving full credit to author and publisher. 







The title of the two volumes contains the adtiition : 
" Twelve Lectures on the Histor}' of the French Revo- 
lution, Delivered at Lowell Institute, Boston, Mass." 

Will the distinguished author pardon me when I 
say that the title chosen by him might have indicated 
the contents better by styling it simply : " Mirabeau 
and His Times." 

That those lectures furnished the basis of his work 
is very true, but by adding copious and often very ex- 
tensive notes printed in quite small type at the foot 
of the text, he has really made it an entirely new work. 
If the words of these notes were counted, I venture to 
say that they would fill a?, many pages as are covered 
by the text. 

It must be remembered that some of the most clas- 
sical productions in literature rest on lectures deliv- 
ered by their authors. The illustrious commentaries 
of Sir William Blackstone, of Chancellor Kent, many 
of the works of Savigny, Judge Story, Francis Liebers 
on law and political ethics, of the historians Michelet 
and Edgar Quinet, Ranke and Sybel, of the philoso- 
phers Kant, Fichte, Schelling, and Hegel, and last, 
but not least, the immortal Cosmos of Alexander von 
Humboldt, owe their origin to lectures, amplified, pol- 
ished, and explained in their published volumes. 

In several respects Professor Hoist's "French 
Revolution illustrated by Mirabeau's life" may be 
compared to Carlyle's French Revolution. Both works 
are addressed to a narrow circle of highly cultured peo- 
ple who are thoroughly informed on the subject-matter 
treated. They are eminently suggestive, make one 
stop, and muse and reflect, incite to comparisons, in a 
word, they are charming for the highly intellectual, but 
are caviar for the mass of ordinary readers. Of course, 
as far as books on philosophy, theology, and the accu- 
rate sciences are concerned, no one expects to read 
them except those who study these branches of learn- 
ing. But too often we find even historians who rely 

too much on the understanding of the public which 
they desire to instruct and enlighten. 

As a rule, the English and French trust less to the 
intelligence of their readers. Hume, Voltaire, Mignet, 
Macaulay; the Americans, Bancroft, Prescott, and 
Motley, carry us down the stream of time in a clear, 
easy, continuous way. They instruct, while they en- 
tertain. A very model of treating history in that style 
is M. Thiers. He may not be equal, as regards clas- 
sical erudition and profoundness of thought, to such 
historians as Carlyle, Michelet, Edgar Quinet, Ranke, 
Sybel, Treitschke, but he leaves no gaps to be filled up 
by the presupposed learning of the average intelligent 
reader. Thiers treats them as a class of scholars sit- 
ting before him on their benches, giving them object- 
lessons. His narrative flows ceaselessly along, not 
obstructed by cataracts or eddies. His descriptions 
are most minute. He thinks for his readers. No 
problem for him which he does not undertake to solve. 
No wonder that in spite of his partiality, his sophistry, 
his occasional shallowness, his story in part legendary 
of the Consulate and Empire, has become so popular! 
What a difference, for instance, between him and 
Ranke, who somewhere says : "I write only for those, 
who do not know; what I think, I know alone." His 
universal history, left incomplete by his death, written 
with a beauty and warmth of style far surpassing that 
of all his former creations, might as well have been 
written in hieroglyphics, as regards the average intel- 
ligence of his readers. 

There is a drawback in books built upon lectures. 
Unless they are carefully revised and condensed, they 
are very apt to abound in what may be justly called 
"damnable reiterations"; the same thoughts, fre- 
quently even in the same garb, occur time and again. 
The reason of this is, however, very plain. The lec- 
turer does not often address the same audiences. The 
professor at the college or university will find, in great 
part, at least, different hearers at each scholastic term. 
The audience of the general lecturer finds his audience 
equally shifting. 

In originality, incisiveness, and boldness of style, 
von Hoist may also be compared to Carlyle. In a 
brief prefatory note he informs us that he has left the 
body of his lectures wholly unchanged, because he 



had published them in compliance with the wishes of 
many of those who heard them delivered, "and had 
desired me to publish what they heard me say, and 
not what I might have said. This accounts for some 
peculiarities of style, "he says ; "I have amply availed 
myself of the liberties deemed admissible in speaking. 
But I have undoubtedly taken also other liberties with 
the English language, simply because I did not know 
any better. Will the reader kindly grant my request 
to judge these leniently? I have deemed it justifiable 
to lay greater stress upon having the 'What' exactly 
as I wanted it to be, rather than to have other people 
file the 'How' into such smooth and idiomatic Eng- 
lish that an easy critic might have mistaken me for a 
native American. I was afraid of their filing away 
rather more of my 'What' than I cared to let go." 

But we find but little difference as far as style and 
peculiar mode of expression are concerned, between 
the author's Mirabeau and his other numerous, very 
able and remarkable writings, such as his works on 
The Constitiitiotial History of the United States, The Life 
of Calhoun. They display the same originality; the 
same freedom in coining new words ; the same, often 
colloquial, style ; the same boldness of metaphor. 
Like Carlyle, von Hoist prefers very often to use the 
hammer of Thor to the polished Toledo steel blade ! 

THE author's introduction. THE ANCIENT REGIME. 


A brief, but extremely well-written sketch of the 
times immediately preceding the great revolution of 
1789 is based principally upon Tocqueville's and 
Taine's Ancien regime, and agrees with the first in set- 
ting aside a very common error, into which many writ- 
ers on the Revolution of '89 have fallen. Von Hoist 
remarks : " To Tocqueville belongs the merit of having 
first discovered and proved that the immoderate cen- 
tralisation, which up to our times has been so emi- 
nently characteristic of France, was not the work of 
the Revolution, but existed already under the ancient 
regime. The essential difference between the two pe- 
riods in this respect consists in this, that the Revolu- 
tion made legal what under the ancient regime was to 
a great extent only a fact. All the threads of the gov- 
ernment issued from and terminated in the council of 
the king {Conseil die Eoi), which had only to execute 
the king's order. In him alone resided all power, 
car tel est mon plaisir. This official formula was not 
an empty figure of speech ; it was in full, in terrible 
accord with the facts." Vol. I., p. 10. 

Our author justly makes the ancient regime re- 
sponsible even for the excesses of the Revolution, 
when he says (Vol. I., p. 44): "If any one had no 
right to pass judgment upon the spirit that ruled 
France from 1793 to 1795 [the Reign of Terror], it 

was the champions of the ancient regime. This spirit 
was the legitimate offspring of the political and social 
system bequeathed by Louis XIV. and Louis XV. to 
Louis XVI." 

Under the title of "Paris and Versailles" we are 
shown the immense and deplorable influence Paris ex- 
ercised over the whole of France, quite different from 
other great capitals. "Paris, " the author says, "contin- 
ued to grow, and the more it grew, the more it became 
the absorbing centre of everything constituting a de- 
termining and creative force in a nation's life. For 
talent and ambition of every variety, aspiring to more 
than a third-rate part, there was but one place in 
France, Paris. As early as 1740 Montesquieu wrote : 
'There is in France nothing but Paris and the dis- 
tant provinces, the latter only because Paris has as 
yet not had time to swallow them.' " Vol. I., p. 59. 

The portraits of King Louis and his queen (Vol. 
I., p. 84) are very justly and happily drawn. He has 
consulted the best contemporaneous sources with dis- 
crimination such as Lamarck, the Austrian Minister 
at Paris, Mercy d'Argenteau, and the correspondence 
between Maria Theresia and d'Argenteau. Very many 
traits of King Louis and his Queen's character appear 
in the course of the book, as on page 84, Vol. I. " His 
father," von Hoist says, "had not allowed him to 
grow up in the poisoned atmosphere of the Court. 
That, however, was about all he had done for him, 
and that was a scanty outfit for the absolute ruler of a 
great empire drifting at an alarming rate into all-em- 
bracing political and social decomposition. . . . His in- 
tellectual horizon was narrow and even within his 
compass he moved but slowly, and no more than he 
could help. Indolent and yet irascible, good-natured 
and yet curt to rudeness ; yielding to every pressure, 
but allowing no one to gain full sway over his ever 
vacillating will ; rendered stubborn by the very con- 
sciousness, and sinking back into redoubled v/eakness 
as soon as the fitful mood of asserting a will of his 
own has spent its force. . . . Well-meaning, but de- 
void of the intellectual as well as of the moral strength 
required to persist, when his good intentions meet with 
resistance ; morally pure, but without any adequate 
conception of either the nature or extent of moral re- 
sponsibility. And just in this, the most essential qual- 
ity, the Queen was even more wanting, though in 
every other respect greatly his superior. Later on, 
when the revolutionary storm had burst in full force 
from the clouds, Mirabeau called Marie Antoinette in 
a momentary access of enthusiastic hopefulness 'the 
only man at court.' She had unquestionably a much 
stronger will and more initiative as well as a keener 
intellect than her royal husband, therefore her ascend- 
ancy over him grew apace with the increasing troubles 
and dangers. . . . Apart from her attitude in her trial 



and on the scaffold, she never rose to being really great 
in a great time, but always betrayed the illy-balanced 
woman, who cannot refrain from allowing petty con- 
siderations of every imaginable kind to interfere more 
or less with the decision of capital questions. And 
what was ultimately lack of the required elevation of 
judgment, purpose, and fate-defying energy, had been 
originally shallowness, fickleness, and frivolous un- 
concern. . . . Marie Antoinette thought the life-task 
of a queen consisted in enjoying herself and helping 
her friends to have a good time of it. Only so far as 
it was serviceable to these ends did she at first try to 
exercise an influence on questions of State, and all 
attempts to kindle in her a sustained interest in any 
other serious occupation proved a sad failure. All 
the charges that have been laid to her door with a 
view to make her appear wicked, are malicious dis- 
tortions or wholly unfounded. She was only thought- 
less and frivolous ; but her thoughtlessness was of a 
kind to provoke malice and slander even if she had 
been surrounded by saints instead of the putrescent 
court inherited from Louis XV. and Madame Du- 
barry. " 

It may not be uninteresting to place alongside of 
this picture, the judgment passed by Barras on King 
Louis in his shameless posthumous memoirs, which 
ought never to have been published. This vainglori- 
ous man, with very few exceptions touching his tools 
and satellites, villifies and besmirches everybody. Na- 
poleon L, Lafayette, Carnot, his colleagues in the di- 
rectory, Madame De Stael, nearly all the generals of 
the Revolution, of the consulate and the empire. Na- 
poleon, according to him, was the vilest of mankind, 
time-serving, false, cruel, a moral coward, of deep in- 
gratitude and devoured by inordinate ambition. He 
married Josephine, Barras says, knowing that she was 
the cast-off mistress of General Hoche and iutii quanii, 
and also his own, Barras's, paramour, and that she had 
love-intrigues even with low menials. And yet this 
known scelerate, whose only redeeming quality was 
his unshakable audacity as a warrior and a states- 
man, pays the following tribute to the King, for whose 
and the Queen's death he had voted, and spoken with- 
out remorse: "Louis XVL was good-hearted, of a 
clear intellect, had sound views and was in part far- 
seeing. If he had not had the faction of ultramontane 
priests and the courtiers, interested in keeping up 
abuses at his side, who frightened him away from 
every reform ; had he not been eternally vacillating, 
which made him decline to day what he was forced to 
do on the morrow, had he been free from the clerical 
and Jesuitical obstructions and left to himself, he 
would have, as my conscience tells me, according to 
his nature sincerely attached himself to the reforma- 
tory principles of the constitution and would have 

helped to carry them through ; all the sad conflicts 
would have been spared him, the French would have 
loved and revered him as the self-sacrificing liberator, 
and he could have remained on his throne powerful, 
great, and venerated." Memoirs oi Barras, Vol. I., p. 70. 

As to the Queen, Barras at another place distinctly 
discharged her from the necklace scandal, and he is 
no mean witness. He tells us himself that the so- 
called Countess of La Motte, who was at the bottom 
of this outrageous swindle, was a very intimate friend 
of his, from whom he learned all the particulars of the 
intrigue after her conviction. Besides he witnessed 
the trial and had access to all the records. 

After the Assembly of Notables, convoked by the 
King to consider the desperate financial condition of 
the realm, and to relieve it by asking the nobility and 
clergy, represented by that assembly, to give up some 
of their privileges and exemptions from taxation and 
from other charges, so as to lighten the burden press- 
ing so heavily upon the common people, had proved 
fruitless, many thought that the King had made a 
great mistake. As far as the King and royalty was 
concerned, this may be admitted, but as regarded the 
people, it was by no means an indifferent matter. 

Mirabeau's sagacity saw clearly the consequences 
of this sort of an appeal to the public, and of the de- 
bates of the assembly which drew the veil from the 
preceding system of absolutism. Mirabeau, then at 
Berlin, wrote to Talleyrand at Paris: "I deem the 
day one of the brightest of my life on which you ap- 
prised me of the convocation of the notables, which 
undoubtedly will precede by but little that of the Na- 
tional Assembl}'. " 

* * 

In the very long chapter, including extensive notes, 
entitled "A Typical Family Tragedy of Portentous 
Political Import," Professor von Hoist draws a por- 
trait of Mirabeau's physical and moral character, rather 
rhapsodically, but with such drastic power and felicity 
of expression that it would be very unsatisfactory to 
disfigure it by extracts. It must be read. We can 
only call the reader's attention to this excellent part 
of the work. 

The Memoirs of Barras, not being so accessible to 
the general public, it may not be out of place to cite 
some remarks about Mirabeau from one of the pages 
of this writer (Vol. I., p. 56): 

"The court had become discouraged by the ill-success of 
using force against a power which it had not known until now, — 
the power of public opinion. It sought to meet the movement by 
other means. With a view of tempting the conscience of the pa- 
triot leaders, the Court tried first the one who had been most vio- 
lently opposed to it, and was consequently feared most. Mirabeau 
was to be bribed. Mediators were chosen. It appears for certain 
that Mirabeau listened to the proposals. He was ofiered 15,000 
or 20,000 francs per month and a probable accession to the minis- 



try, if he would use his influence to serve or rather to sustain the 
government, which had received from him the most violent blow. 
A man of esprit said at the time : ' Mirabeau may have sold him- 
self, but he will never deliver himself.' Monsieur (later on Louis 
XVIII.) being used from his youth to despise men and corrupt 
them, closed the bargain with Mirabeau." 

There is hardly now a difference of opinion as to 
Mirabeau's character. It must be conceded that he 
was from his early youth a Jcbatiche. Women, he con- 
fessed, "were his only occupation, and licentiousness 
his second nature; he was a gambler, a bully, a for- 
tune-hunter, a spendthrift, a libellous pamphleteer, 
many of whose writings were, by order of the govern- 
ment, burnt publicly by the common hangman ; he 
was devoured by a towering ambition, and with all 
that he had a warm and generous heart, hated injus- 
tice done to him and others, despised all shams, and 
was a giant in intellect." 

As to his glaring faults and vices, we must bear in 
mind that he was the child of his time, the true repre- 
sentative of the moral standard of the majority of the 
nobility, of the clergy, and even of the parvenu bour- 
geoisie. The moment he appeared in public life as the 
great intellectual champion of revolutionary ideas, his 
private character, with the friends of liberty, seemed 
to be obliterated. He swayed at once at his will the 
National Assembly and the Jacobin Club, and as he 
had even before the Revolution always shown the 
greatest sympathy for the low and oppressed, he be- 
came easily an idol of the populace. Witness : his 
funeral and the deposition of his mortal remains in the 
Pantheon. It was fortunate for him that he died at 
the right time, as in fact everybody does. To have 
formed at this period a sincere and fruitful alliance 
between royalty and liberty was a problem even a 
Mirabeau could not solve. The foremost biographer 
of Germany, Mr. Varnhagen von Ense, in his sensa- 
tional Diaries, remarks about Mirabeau ;^ "He stood 
on a wrong plane, the plane of the Court, fenced in by 
those who ruled the King, where his strength, like 
that of a lion in his cage, had no room to work, was 

Mirabeau, I believe, would never have become a 
Marat, nor a Robespierre. The fate of Danton would 
have overtaken him. In successful revolutions the 
initiators and leaders almost invariably become the 
victims of the upheaval they have started. The often- 
made comparison that revolutions like Saturn devour 
their own children would have proved true in Mira- 
beau's case. 

In Mr. von Hoist's subsequent lectures of the first 
volume we meet with a highly interesting and learned 
disquisition on the States-General. Referring to the 
opening of this body he says : "On the 5th of May, 

i Diaries, Vol. XII., p. 67. 

1789, the King said in his speech: 'A general unrest 
and overstrained desire for innovations has taken pos- 
session of the minds and might end by confusing pub- 
lic opinion entirely, if one does not make haste to give 
it a hold by a combination of wise and moderate coun- 
cils. The minds are in agitation ; but an assembly of 
representatives of the nation will undoubtedly hear 
only the voice of wisdom and prudence.'" — "Will 
undoubtedly!" Von Hoist exclaims, "Can a babe be 
more trustful ! Sure enough, he tells the nation, — it is 
an avalanche bearing straight down upon us. But 
why be scared ? It is the business of these gentlemen 
to see to it that its course be arrested ere any harm is 
done. That was virtually the abdication of the Govern- 
ment.'''' (Pp. 240-241.) 



Upon the States-General Mirabeau has remarked, 
that he had considered as another obstacle the difficulty, 
or, rather, the absolute impossibility, systematically to 
direct an assembly of such a vast mass, over which its 
most revered chiefs have only very little ascendency, 
and which eludes every influence. The direction of 
so numerous an assembly, even if it had been possible 
at the moment of its formation, was no more so to- 
day, thanks to the habit it had acquired of acting like 
the people it represents, by movements always brusque, 
always passionate, always precipitate. 

"And this incongruous mass-meeting," von Hoist 
says, "with nothing and nobody to guide it, is not 
only an ordinary legislature ; it is also a constituent 
assembly. Surely, if there is a people on the face of 
the earth which ought to be capable of fully grasp- 
ing what that implies, it is the people of this re- 
public. Recall to your memory your own Philadel- 
phia Convention (1787). A mere handful of men, all 
weighed and not found wanting in times that tried 
men's souls, all looked up to and revered as the wisest 
and best, all trained in every respect to an uncommon 
degree in the school of experience, only political and 
not social problems being their task ; — and even the 
political confined to a limited field; — and yet it is con- 
ceded by every single student of that period I have 
ever heard of, that they would surely have failed, if 
they had not started with the wise resolution to delib- 
erate behind closed doors, and not to let the people 
know what they were doing until they had finished 
the arduous work entrusted to them. And now, look 
at this picture: twelve hundred men, untried, inex- 
perienced, ushered into their official existence, with a 
protracted and most bitter contest, not prompted by 
the same impulses, not striving after the same aim 
and ends, discussing and framing the political consti- 




tution and social structure of the country in the open 
market and soon under the direct fire of the galleries! 

"Aye the States-General," the author winds up 
his chapter on the Assembly, " were a rudderless craft 
in a storm-tossed sea, carried by the currents straight 
on to the breakers, and the crew not only most griev- 
ously blundered, but also the deep stain of guilt spot- 
ted its garments profusely. But that this crew, thus 
collected, could under such circumstances make such 
a sail, bears a testimony to the genius and the high- 
soaring idealism of the great nation, than which there 
is none more glorious in its whole history." 

The second volume opens with a brief review of 
the voluminous works of French, German, and Eng- 
lish historians, who have undertaken to write the life 
of Mirabeau. Mr. von Hoist comes to the conclusion 
that they have more or less failed to get at the very 
kernel of his character, and that his true biography 
has yet to be written. I believe our author does him- 
self injustice. True, neither he nor Carlyle have given 
us a dry, connected, chronological narrative of Mira- 
beau from his babyhood up to his death, interspersed 
with occasional explanations, epigrams, and reflex- 
ions, but whoever has read Carlyle's French Revolu- 
tion, or will read von Hoist's lectures, is sure to have 
obtained a most vivid, truthful portraiture of this most 
complex man. They have gauged his character to 
its very depths and have successfully unveiled that 

Not less have they given us wonderfully true pic- 
tures of some of the most striking personages of that 
chaotic period : of the King, the Queen, the Duke of 
Orleans, of Brienne, of La Mark, Necker, Lafayette, 
(upon the latter, I think, von Hoist is too severe,) and 
of many others. 

In his second series of lectures our author gives us 
very many extracts from some of the greatest speeches 
and letters of Mirabeau, for which he deserves our 
thanks. We are constrained to give only a few speci- 
mens. When in January, 1789, a Paris paper had 
called him a traitor, a mad dog, he replied : "If I am 
a mad dog, that is an excellent reason to elect me, for 
despotism and privileges will die of my bite." When 
right at the start in the provinces and even in Paris 
murderous scenes of violence and destruction of the 
property of nobles had taken place, and in the States- 
General arguments were based on the ideal social 
teachings of Rousseau and his followers, Mirabeau 
said : " Liberty never was the fruit of a doctrine elab- 
orated by philosophical deductions, but of everyday 
experience, and the simple reasonings elicited by the 
facts. We are not savages coming naked from the 
shores of the Orinoco to form a society. We are an 
old nation, and undoubtedly too old for our epoch. 
We have a pre-existing government, a pre-existing 

king, pre-existing prejudices. As far as possible one 
must adapt the things to the Revolution and avoid 
abruptness of transition." 

And at another place : "And I, gentlemen, believe 
the royal veto to such a degree necessary that I should 
rather live in Constantinople than in France, if he 
were not to have it ; yes, I declare that I should know 
nothing more terrible than the sovereign authority of 
twelve hundred persons who could render themselves 
to-morrow irremovable, the day after to-morrow, hered- 
itary, and would end, as the aristocracies of all coun- 
tries, by encroaching upon everything." After he had 
been vituperated by the press and threatened with 
death by an exasperated people, and having been 
warned by a friend who had read the article to him of 
the danger he might encounter, he at once took it up 
to the tribune, and thundered : "I did not need this 
lesson that it is but a small distance from the Capitol 
to the Tarpeian rock. . . . Let them abandon to the 
fury of the deceived people him who for twenty years 
waged war upon every oppression, and who spoke to 
the people of France of liberty, constitution, resis- 
tance, at a time when these vile calumniators lived in 
all the prevailing prejudices. What do I care ? Such 
blows from such hands will not check my course. An- 
swer me if you are able, then calumniate as much as 
you like. I will be carried away from here triumphant 
or in shreds." 

When laws were proposed to make emigration a 
crime, Mirabeau objected to the reading of the bill 
and moved the order of the day, insisting that it was 
not possible either to justify or execute a prohibition 
of emigration : "Not indignation, reflexion must make 
the laws," he declared. The code of Draco, but not 
the statutes of France, would be a fit place for a law 
like that contemplated by the committee." ... I de- 
clare that I should consider myself free from every 
oath of fidelity towards those who become guilty of 
the infamy of appointing a dictatorial commission. . . 
The popularity which I have had the honor to enjoy 
like others is not a weak reed. I want to sink its roots 
into the earth on the imperturbable basis of reason 
and liberty. If you make a law against emigrants, I 
swear I will never obey it." As long as Mirabeau 
lived no law against emigrants passed. 

In his lecture, one before the last, entitled " Mira- 
beau and the Court," our author discusses with great 
discrimination the charge of bribery against Mirabeau. 
"Mirabeau," he says, "received money from the 
King, that is an established fact." But he pleads, ex- 
tenuating circumstances when he adds : " An equally 
undeniable fact, however, is that for generations pub- 
lic opinion — and more especially that of the upper 
classes — considered it a matter of course that anybody 
who had a chance to get money from the king should 



improve it. If we want to be just judges we must 
keep this well in mind, because Mirabeau, like every 
historical personage, has to be judged by the standard 
of his, and not of our own time." He also points to 
instances in Mirabeau's antecedent career, where he 
refused taking a large bribe offered to him by a great 
banking corporation, for suppressing a pamphlet 
he had written denouncing the iniquities of that insti- 

We have already given what Barras, a bitter en- 
emy, had said regarding this bribery business, "that 
Mirabeau may have sold himself, but will never de- 
liver himself." Von Hoist cites also Lafayette's say- 
ing about Mirabeau : "Mirabeau was not inaccessible 
to money, but for no amount would he have sustained 
an opinion that would have destroyed liberty and dis- 
honored his name." And Lafayette was by no means 
a lenient judge of Mirabeau, but quite the reverse. 

The last lecture is a masterly resume of Mirabeau's 
character and of his times. We had marked many 
passages for their fulness of views and attractiveness 
of style, but must come to an end with the closing 
lines of the lecture : 

"In quantity and in quality, the work done by 
France since the establishment of the third republic 
in regard to the history of the Revolution challenges 
the highest admiration. It is nevertheless to last an- 
other century ere she is prepared to do full justice to 
her greatest son of the greatest period of her history. 
Who can tell ? Mere knowledge of the fact does not 
suffice. Her judgment upon this chapter of her past 
must be warped so long as she flinches from probing 
the present to the quick ; and much as the third re- 
public has done for the intellectual and political ad- 
vancement of the nation, it has as yet not produced 
that supreme moral courage required by the precept 
of the Greek sage : ' Know thyself.' " 


There is a strange agreement between Christian 
and Buddhistic sentiment as expressed in hymns and 
religious poetry. The well-known crusader's song 
which, it is said, was sung by Christian warriors on 
their march to Palestine, to a beautiful rhythmic 
march-melody, concludes with the following verse : 
" Fair is the moonshine, 
Fairer the sunlight 

Than all the stars of the heavenly host. 
Jesus shines brighter, 
Jesus shines purer 

Than all the angels that heaven can boast." 
How much does this resemble the following verse 
in the Dhammapada (verse 387) : 
" The sun is bright by day. 
The moon shines bright by night, 
The warrior is bright in his armor, 

The Brahmana is bright in his meditation, 

But Buddha, the awakened. 

Is brightest with splendor day and night."' 

There is not the slightest evidence that the cru- 
sader's hymn is an echo of the verse of the Dhamma- 
pada. How naturally similar sentiments develop un- 
der the same conditions of mind may be learned from 
the following poem which we quote from "The Ten 
Theophanies " by the Rev. William M. Baker. We 
take the liberty only of making a few changes in the 
order of the verses and replace Christian terms by 
Buddhistic expressions. The sentiment remains un- 
altered and shows how thoroughly the religious litera- 
ture of the one religion can be utilised for the other. 
The poem, which may be entitled either "Lifting the 
Veil of Maya" or "A Glimpse of Nirvana," reads in 
its revised version as follows : 

"Melt, oh thou 61m-flake, faster. 
Rend, thou thin gauze, in two, 

Biii/iiha^, overmaster. 
Break in effulgence through ! 

1 know how very nearly 

I draw unto thy realms. 
I know that it is merely 

A film which overwhelms 
These eyes from rapturous seeing. 

These ears from rapturous sound. 
This self from i>«(/(///o -being. 

This life from broken bound. - 
O sacred lig!i/, o'erflov; thee ! 

Rush irons into one. 
That earth and heaven may know the 

Eternal rest begun ! " r. c. 



To the Editor of The Open Court: 

Your remarks upon " The Responsibility of God" demand a 
kindly, counter criticism, because they are one-sided. The lime 
has come, now, for us, who claim to be fearlessly following the 
lead of science, to get down to cosmic facts in all our philosoph- 
ical reasoning ; absolutely abandoning the false premises of reli- 
gion which make mankind wholly responsible for all the ills which 
they daily experience and suffer. All the religious sects convened 
in the great Parliament of Religions were unanimous in voicing 
the accountability of man, but not one of them, that I could learn, 
declared for the responsibility of God. They affirmed like you, 
that " we are our own makers. We reap what we sow. . . . The 
existence of evil in this world is the fruit of our own doing. We 
are the builders of our own fate, and we must be our own sav- 
iours." This false view is taken from the standpoini of authority, 
not from that of truth ; is the logical result of allowing our con- 
clusions to be governed by the notions of eminent religious teach- 
ers instead of by our actual experiences and nature's revelations. 
In the human mechanical domain, the intelligent engineer, who 

1 Sacred Books of the East, Vol. X., p. 89. 

2 The italics indicate the changes made. Line 3 reads in the original 
" Eternal heaven, o'ermaster" ; line 11, "This self from God-like being"; 
line 13, "day " in place of "light"', and line 14, "a-ons" (which stands for 
the Buddhist term " kalpas") in place of "Sabbaths." 



has experience, figures that can be relied upon, timbers, bolts, 
plates, and rods, and everything necessary to construct a heavy 
load-bearing bridge, is responsible for the safety of tbe trains that 
have to pass over. God is just as responsible in his domain. If 
a flower, shrub, or tree dies for want of rain, God is responsible. 
If a cyclone ruthlessly devastates a town, God is responsible. If 
a hail-storm destroys the crops which man sowed, God is responsi- 
ble. In fact, God is responsible for all distress, upon sea and 
land, that comes beyond the power of man to avoid. He is re- 
sponsible for the lion preying upon the lamb — for the stronger and 
more subtle among mankind taking advantage of the weaker, for 
allowing one to reap what another sows. As in the case of the 
engineer and the bridge, so is it with God and his organisms. If 
a man is combined and evolved vicious, he cannot be moral. If 
sickly, he cannot be healthy. If simple, he cannot be wise, no 
more than a bridge can be made to be both weak and strong. It 
does not matter what Buddha has said, or what other eminent 
teachers have said in regard to mankind reaping what they sow ; 
pure science confounds them all, showing that all things in the 
domain of God, as well as in that of man, must be systematically 
and mathematically combined and arranged. In the scientific 
language of the Nazarene, "Men do not gather grapes of thorns 
or figs of thistles. A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither 
can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit." The evolutions of God 
express themselves just as they are combined and endowed. They 
cannot do otherwise. The glow-worm cannot give back more 
light than it gets, neither can the moon. They must give back all 
they get if they are so conditioned. It is so with mankind. Hence 
we are not " our own builders," nor " our ov/n saviours." We are 
simply organisms under the process of God's evolution. The gos- 
pel of the Nazarene, therefore, is supeiior to all others and differs 
from Buddhism in this : It teaches that God is lord, who else can 
be lord ? Whatsoever God sows that he also reaps. Whatsoever 
a man sows, that he must sow, but it is not always in his power to 
reap what he sows. He has not always control of every factor in 
the combinations which he has to make. ThfinlnoT/ i^-^ caHrflp/l 
the burden of responsibility upon mankind long enough. Science 
places it where it justly belongs. Let the defenders of the religious 
hypothesis refute me if they can. John Maddock. 

[Accepting Mr. Maddock's definition of God, we grant that 
he is right and his argument is valid. God (that is the totality of 
cosmic evolution) is responsible for all his doings and he must 
reap what he sows. 

This view of God is in Christian dogmatology called God tbe 

When we speak of God as being above responsibility we mean 
those eternal relations in cosmic existence which ultimately con- 
stitute the authority of conduct ; or, in other words, that omni- 
present power which is constantly begetting God the Son, i, e., 
God the Father. 

Man, every single individual, and also the whole of mankind, 
is a part of God the Son, i. e., God as the cosmic evolution of life, 
and we are responsible with him, because we are identical with 
him. As soon as we tear a man out from the conditions of his 
being, regarding him not as the living continuation of his condi- 
tions but as a product that is cut loose from the roots from which 
it grew, he can no longer be regarded as responsible. The more 
man recognises the solidarity of his own fate with the destiny of 
mankind, the more he will feel the dignity of his divinity, of his 
sonship, of his responsibility. — Ed.] 

that article, and what I here say is based on those quotations. 
Concerning the sermon you say; "This is a strange sermon, a 
sermon that probably has never been preached before in any one 
of the Christian pulpits." 

Now there may be some strange things in the parts of the 
sermon which you do not quote ; for I do not know the denomi- 
nation to which the Rev. Mr. Smith belongs. But in the quota- 
tions I find nothing strange. I have preached the same ever since 
I have been in the ministry. Dr. Haney, my father-in-law, says 
it is the doctrine he has always preached, and that he has heard 
all his life. And this is not all. The same doctrine is preached 
by every one of the more than 32,000 Methodist preachers in the 
United States ; and it is the doctrine that has been preached by 
the Methodisis from the beginning. It might have to be modified 
somewhat in a Calvinistic pulpit ; but in any Arminian pulpit 
such a doctrine is always at home. 

Now what does all this show ? It shows that in this — and 
other particulars could be given — the apostle of the "Religion of 
Science" does not understand what orthodox Christian pulpits 
are preaching. Notably does this seem to be true on the subject 
of ethics. 

Come and hear us, Doctor, Sunday after Sunday. 

And in the mean time, while we all fight on, we are sure of 
this, as Mr. Hegeler said during my last call, the truth is sure to 
prevail. A. Lincoln Shute. 


Organic Change, Not Identity. 
To the Rditor of The Open Court : 

In the letter headed, "Can There Be a New Christianity? " 
Mrs. Hopper asks: "Would any religion that had received a 
name on account of its distinctive features be able, 'with all rev- 
erence to the past,' to accept a truth without compromise, what- 
ever the truth may be ? " 

To the Editor of The Open Court: 

The Open Court of the 6th inst. received ; and among other 
articles I have read "The Responsibility of God." I know noth- 
ing of the sermon of Mr. Smith, except what you have quoted in 

religions, by following the injunction of accepting the truth with- 
out compromise, whatever the truth may be, must come to one 
and the same conclusion." 

But where are the religions that enjoin the acceptance of the 
truth without compromise ? Religions do not present their dog- 
mas as truths in the ordinary sense, they present them as sacred 
utterances from sources of wisdom beyond human experience. 
True, Jesus is said to have affirmed that he should be followed by 
the spirit of truth, and that the truth should make men free. But 
is this the position of other religions ; or in fact of Jesus himself? 
Certainly, if he ever did make such a statement, it was not what 
gave faith, life, and energy to his disciples, who gave no serious 
attention to it. It was the doctrine of the resurrection, which 
gave being to Christianity, that the Son of the Living God had 
come down from heaven to offer up his mortal life a sacrifice for 
suffering men, and that those who believed in Him should live 
again after death, and be blessed in immortality. This was the 
Truth to be accepted without compromise — not to accept it, to 
accept a denial, to accept another truth, was to despise the Divine 
Compassion, to lose the Grace, to lose the bliss in immortality. 

It is so with all religions ; each presents a truth to be accepted 
without compromise, but not the truth. 

Nor is it correct that religions have a common ideal. It is 
the nature of religions to deny to each other a common ideal, and 
to hate and fight against it. 

There is next to be considered the nature of the truths that 
religions present for acceptance ; the origin of those truths, how 
they were obtained, how they were known as truths ; and if they 
have any relation or leading to such a truth as Dr. Carus finds in 




science, and which he believes may be made a moralising force to 
take the pjace of religion. 

What is the truth of Christianity? The affirmation that a man 
called Jesus was the son of God ; that he was crucified by men, 
and rose from the dead. 

What is the affirmation of the Mohammedan religion ? That 
a man called Mohammed ascended to Paradise ; that he saw God, 
and that there is but one God. 

Are these affirmations acknowledged to be truths by the 
knowledge of today — that knowledge which we call science ? 

Dr. Carus affirms that every religion affirms a truth : Dr. 
Cams is exactly wrong ; every religion affirms as truth what is 
not true. 

How can the continued affirmation of falsehoods be a con- 
tinued movement toward the affirmation of truth ? 

If these falsehoods were put forward by religion as merely 
conjectural approaches to truth, it would be different ; but they 
are affirmed as absolute. 

What is their origin ; is it in reality? Yes, and no. It is in 
reality, because in personal experience ; not in reality, because 
that experience came through illusion — the illusion of spirit ex- 

Jesus, Mahommed, the Greeks, the Buddhists, believed in 
disembodied existences ; by these existences their truths are com- 

Repudiated by knowledge, which is able to give the simplest 
explanation of how they arose, absolutely false, absolutely mis- 
leading, these illusions have had the profoundest influence upon 
human conduct, because they gave the assurance to each believer 
that his existence continued after death, and that his conduct in 
this existence would determine his after enjoyment or suffering. 

So, far from being the effects of truth, the remarkable actions 

of those men who have founded religions, to quote Mr. Lester F. 

Ward, "must be referred not only to a pathological, but to an 

actually deranged condition of their minds. And the strange 

truth thus comes up for our contemplation that, instead of having 
^ .J J J . _ „ , ,, „„u .crnsuii xnroughout all 

the years of history, we have been ruled and swayed by the mag- 
netic passions of epileptics and monomaniacs." 

Thus as Dr. Carus concludes, " the essence of religion can be 
only one and must remain one and the same among all nations, in 
all climes, and under all conditions." 

But that essence is not truth — it is error. 

Now it is true that by Christianity " we understand, not so 
much the doctrines of Jesus Christ, as the whole movement that 
was created through the aspirations of his life"; that movement 
has organically developed, as Dr. Carus describes, from the aspi- 
rations of his life, and is Jesus; but the foundation of all the 
movement, the start to belief, and to the aspiration itself of Jesus, 
was the assumption that he was the son of God and rose from the 

When, as Mrs. Hopper suggests, the ideal Christ is separated 
from the real Jesus — in other words, the illusion of Jesus is dis- 
covered and explained — there is left no truth in Christianity ; 
Christianity as a moralising force is dead ; it has no more an or- 
ganic structure ; as Weisraann might say, it's germ-plasm is ex- 
hausted, and a belief founded on a different kind of experience, 
"a religion based upon the laws of existence, traceable in the 
psychical, social, and physical facts of experience," cannot claim 
to be called the New Christianity. No, nor a religion. 

J. W. Gaskine. 

[Mr. J. W. Gaskine can speak for himself that "Christianity 
as a moralising force is dead," but he cannot speak for others. To 
many members of the Christian churches, and also to others who 
for some reason or other do not join the churches, Christianity is 

a living power, the moral ideals of which, whether right or wrong, 
exercise a determinative influence upon their actions. 

However, as evolution is the law of life, we can observe a change 
in the interpretation of Christianity. Christianity is like a mustard- 
seed. It is growing. The Christianity of the Jews is broadened 
when preached to the Greek ; and again the Christianity of the 
Greek changes when it reaches Rome. The Christianity of Pro- 
testant countries may be characterised as a Teutonic Christianity, 
and to-day Christianity is on the verge of entering into a new and 
indeed a higher phase, which is conditioned by its contact with 
science. If Christianity will broaden under the influence of sci- 
ence, it will live ; if it refuses to listen to science, it will slowly, 
and probably peacefully, expire. 

He who observes the intellectual commotion in our churches 
cannot doubt that there is a new view of Christianity taking hold 
of the religious leaders of our country. Mr. Gaskine's descrip- 
tion of Christianity is the old view in its external characteristics, 
for he omits to mention those aspirations which contain the poten- 
tiality of a broader growth. His definition of religion is like a 
chemist's analysis of the ingredients of corn, or wheat, which will 
enable us to determine whether the substance is edible or not, but 
ignores that subtle something called " life," which, under proper 
conditions, will cause every grain to sprout and to grow and bear 
fruit in its season. 

We know very well that among the followers of Moses, Christ, 
Buddha, and Mohammed there are many to whom religion is an 
assertion that is accepted as a supernatural revelation, which must 
be believed, although it may be proved to be wrong; but broader 
views are dawning on mankind. We are not bound to be tied 
down by the narrowness of former generations ; we have the lib- 
erty of growing, and, so far as we are concerned, we are determined 
to make use of it, whether or not Mr. Gaskine is prepared to fol- 
low us. — Ed.] 

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tor 4828 


"The Responsibility of God." [With Editorial Com- 
ment.] John Maddock. — A. Lincoln Shute. . . 4828 
No Resurrection — No Christianity. [With Editorial 

Comment.] J. W. Gaskine 4829 

The Open Court. 



No. 445. (Vol. X.— 10. 

CHICAGO, MARCH 5, 1896. 

Copyright by The Open Court Publishing Co. — Reprints are permitted only on condition of giving full credit to author and publisher. 



Some years ago, when by the severe freezes, as the 
vernacular of Florida calls a frost that kills potatoes 
or orange-trees, I had been driven away from the sub- 
tropical scenes of my horticultural endeavors, I hit 
upon the city of Atlanta, Ga., as a place lit to repair 
my reverses of fortune, and had the good luck of meet- 
ing, not that, indeed, which is commonly styled good 
luck, viz., material abundance, but of making the ac- 
quaintance of a man who had a philosophical turn of 
mind, and, by making me talk philosophy, caused me 
to forget my more than per capita proportion of the 
national stringency of the money-market. 

It was, however, only recently, that my man looked 
at the world in an independent style, trying to explain 
things in their natural harmony. A few years ago he 
had been an obedient sheep of the flock to which his 
wife belonged, who was the most active member of a 
little church in the neighborhood, and one of those 
characters, who, in the interest of religion, would, if 
they could, resuscitate Torquemada and his santa in- 
quisicion, nor shrink from witnessing an auto de fe, 
thinking with the princess of Eboli, "it is only heret- 
ics that burn," just like the child which is shown the 
picture of another scene of faith-prosecution, as they 
were habitual in Rome : Seeing in the arena five tigers 
with only four Christians, she exclaims compassion- 
ately, "oh, that one tiger, poor fellow, he has no 
Christian at all ! " 

There was a special occurrence which had caused 
my man to bow down to his wife's blind faith-profes- 
sion. He had a son, an exceedingly smart little fel- 
low, as he stated, of two years and a half, and he lost 
the child. Somehow or other the boy had taken sick, 
by too much petting perhaps, and, all the exertions 
notwithstanding, the child died. 

The discomfiture of the father was more than com- 
mon. The child had been his only boy, his hope, and 
so much more his joy, as the little fellow, young as he 
was, had begun to display mental peculiarities of his 
father; a splendid memory, a talent for recitation, and 
a histrionic propensity, which sometimes, when we 

were allowed a glimpse of it, made me regret that the 
old man had not chosen the stage as his career. 

When the child was taken away from him he yielded 
to the influence of his wife, went with her to church, 
and sought consolation in the parson's doctrines. But 
in proportion as the emotional outburst of his grief 
got under the control of his critique, he began to give 
access to the doubt which theretofore had assailed 
him ; and finding it impossible to give a satisfactory 
answer to the question, how is it, that an omnipotent 
ruler of the world, if he be at all a loving one, can let 
things come to pass, such as could evidently be so 
easily forfended, as they are a cruelty without any 
sensible motive; he broke loose from the church again. 
Not having found the solace which he joined it for, 
he saw no use for it in any other way, and his wife, 
whose denominational persistency nothing in the world 
could shatter, had to favor the clergyman with her 
courteousness all by herself again, and she did it with 
a vengeance, much to the discomfort of her renitent 

Nor had in the latter the grief abated in propor- 
tion to the number of years which had passed by ; he 
did not find in his intellect but what fostered the bit- 
terness with which he viewed the blow he had re- 
ceived, and by occasional remarks I could tell that he 
envied me the luck of having a boy of just the age his 
little one would have been, had he lived up to our 
time. 1 was sorry to see him in such a pitiable state 
of mind, and I availed myself of my philosophy to 
turn him from the desolation of his thoughts. 

"Look here, Sir," I addressed him one evening, 
when he came for a chat, as was his wont, " you are 
mistaken if you think, that in our fate, all the loss is 
on your side. When I came to this country, a decade 
and odd years ago, I had a little boy of precisely the 
age yours was. Where is he ? There is another one, 
fourteen years old, I admit. But is that the same 
boy ? The two-and-a-half-years-old was my pet. I 
took delight in the peculiarities of the child. There 
was something extremely peculiar, or 'cute, as the 
people said, in the manly independence which he, the 
baby, displayed. I see him j'et standing in the slip 
of the Arizona in New York, where we were waiting 
for our luggage to come up, close to a bale of mer- 



chandise on which he leaned his elbow, supporting 
his head with his hand, and looking at a bunch of 
municipality-flunkies with an expression as if he stud- 
ied the kind of government of which they were the 
symptoms. And the flunkies noticed him, too, and 
showed by their mimics that they made the little im- 
migrant the subject of their conversation, speculating 
on what the puny fellow in a black velvet gown might 
grow up to. 

"I admit, as I said before, that I have a boy of 
fourteen in place of the one of two-and-a-half-years I 
lost. But is this loss for all that not a reality ? Can 
I take the fourteen-years-old on my lap? Can I hug 
and kiss him ten times in a minute ? Good gracious, 
should I not feel his indignation at all the four cor- 
ners of his extremities, if I tried ? 

"There was something so extremely sympathetic in 
the independence of the baby. In the independence 
of the fourteen-years-old there is no trace of such a 
quality. I cannot complain of independence ; it was 
my own work. The aim of education, when I was 
a child, was to break my will, and broke it was, with 
a vengeance , that means to say, not only toward my 
father, but toward anybody who knew how to touch the 
right string of my overstrung soul. This terrible fate 
I wanted to save my pet from, and I fostered his nat- 
ural bent to independence by the mental influence 
which I brought to bear upon him. Was it not nat- 
ural that his sense of independence turned against me 
just as well as against others, perhaps more even, in 
order to show off? So he wore his shoes as pointed as 
he could get them, although he knew well enough 
that I hated to see pointed shoes. 

" You lost your boy by death. There was a stop 
put to his growing up. This was undoubtedly a very 
deplorable event. But you err, if you think that there 
is nothing for me to deplore. Individually, I lost as 
much as you, pro et contra, I mean, taking me as an in- 
dividual and taking the child as an individual, because 
in my case there was individually as little constancy 
as in yours. The entire difference is, that I reared a 
boy for the world, for society, and you were prevented 
from doing so. But that is all. If death had not 
taken your child you could have done as I, reared an 
infant to become a member of society. But would 
that have been a way of keeping your child of two 
years and a half? No, sir ; one way or the other, you 
had to give up your possession. The two-and-a-half- 
years-old, in either case, had to go ; he had to be 
sacrificed to the future, to a different, a new exis- 

My disquisition was not lost upon my man. On 
the next morning he returned to the subject of the 
evening by the remark : "So you lost your pet as well 

as I mine?" And he felt the comfort of the ancient 
saying, Solatnen miseris socios habuisse tnalorum. 

And howsoever we look at it, true it is, a palpable 
reality, that by living we are far from escaping the ceas- 
ing in which death consists. There is an ugly feature 
to death. This is when it comes at the hour which is 
not in season, in babyhood, or youth, or in full manhood 
or womanhood, before the term of development is 
reached. Then it is like a mutilation, not worse, for 
mutilation can be thought and occurs, which is worse 
than death. But when death knocks in season at the 
door of life, death has nothing ugly, nor painful, not 
for the one who dies, nor for those who remain be- 
hind, for there is nothing anj' more for the moribund 
to perform than to drop back into the lap of Mother 
Earth, whence all through his life he drew his suste- 
nance, and all complaint that there is such an arrange- 
ment as death in nature is unpractical and unjust, un- 
less it be a complaint of nature's inability to act up to 
her programme, by extending human life to a length- 
ier stretch than the poor average of thirty-five, which 
statistics teaches is now the mean figure of long- 

But how much is due to the mischief of our own 
doing ? Do we care for our health as we ought to do ? 
Ought not public opinion to be so conditioned as to 
ostracise all the bad habits which gnaw at the health of 
men, instead of winking at the seven-years- old who 
copies his elders to an identity of imitation in puffing 
his cigarette ? 

Our bad habits it is which should excite our re- 
morse, not their result : a premature death. Death is 
no loss. It is constantly repaired by birth. It is ugly 
when it survenes before its time. But are not all 
things ugly when they are out of season? 

Nobody ever complains of the ceasing of the phase 
of life in which he is, for that is a ceasing which he 
feels is in order. Everybody knows or must be aware 
that the more he is ambitious to make something out 
of himself, the less he can avoid ceasing to be what he 
was before. Neither would death be regretted if it 
came in due time only, at the end of a perfectly ac- 
complished biological career. 


Buddhism is commonly regarded as a religion, 
which, though it may be adapted to the passive na- 
tions of Asia, could never have exercised any lasting 
influence upon the energetic races of the West. But 
this is true only if Buddhism is identified with that 
quietism which makes of indolence the cardinal virtue 

IThe Rreater number of Goethe's poems quoted in this article are not 
commonly known in English-speaking countries, or at least have never as yet 
been translated into English. The translations offered here (with the excep- 
tion of three bearing the signatures of Bayard Taylor, J. S. Dwight, and Edgar 
Alfred Bowring) are by the author of the present arjicle. 



of life. Nothing, however, is further removed from 
the Tathagata's teachings than passive indifference ; 
and the truth is that some of the greatest geniuses of 
Europe have spontaneously developed the essential 
doctrines of the venerable sage of the Shakya, in whom 
Buddhists take refuge. 

One of the most striking examples of Buddhistic 
modes of thought in a Western mind, incredible though 
it may appear to those who persistently misunder- 
stand the spirit of Buddhism, is the great German 
poet Wolfgang Goethe, the Darwinist before Darwin, 
the prophet of monism and positivism, the natura- 
list among bards and the bard among naturalists. 
Goethe, unlike Augusta Comte, the founder of the 
French positivism, did not believe in unknowable 
causes behind phenomena. He proclaimed the prin- 
ciple of genuine positivism, saying :^ 

" The highest would be to understand that all facts are them, 
selves theory. The azure color of the sky reveals to us the funda- 
mental law of chromatics. We must not seek anything behind 
phenomena ; for they themselves are our lesson." 

" Das Hochste ware : zu begreifen, dass alles Factische schon 
Theorie ist. Die Blaue des Himraels offenbart uns das Grund- 
gesetz der Chromatik. Man suche nur nichts hinter den Phano- 
menen : sie selbst sind die Lehre." 

This principle implies the denial of all things in 
themselves supposed to reside in man's soul as well as 
in the world as a whole ; and this truth is expressed 
by Buddha in the sentence : "There is no atman." 
We shall prove our proposition that, in this sense, 
Goethe was a Buddhist, by quoting several of his poems 
which prove that he espoused the doctrine of Karma 
as well as the Buddhist psychology, which knows noth- 
ing of an atman or separate ego-self but regards the 
soul of man as a complex product of many ingredients 
constituting our Karma inherited from former exist- 
ences and destined to continue after death according 
to our deeds done during life. 

Goethe analyses himself in the following poem : 

" From father my inheritance 

Is stature and conduct steady; 
From mother my glee, that love of romance, 
And a tongue that's ever ready. 

My grandpa was fond of ladies fair, 

Which still my soul is haunting. 
My grandma jewels loved to wear. 

Like her I'm given to vaunting. 

Now since this complex can't but be 

The sum of all these features. 
What is original in me 

Or other human creatures ?" 

" Vom Vater hab ich die Statur, 
Des Lebens ernstes Fuhren, 
Von Miitterchen die Frohnatur 
Und Lust zu fabuliren. 

Urahnherr war der Schonsten hold, 
Das spukt so bin und wieder ; 
Urahnfrau liebte Schmuck und Gold, 
Das zuckt wohl durch die Glieder. 
Sind nun die Elemente nicht 
Aus dem Complex zu trennen, 
Was ist denn an dem ganzen Wicht 
Original zu nennen ?" 

The question "What am 1?" is answered by 
Goethe : "I am a commonwealth of inherited tenden- 
cies and ideas." 

Man is inclined to look upon his own sweet self as 
a distinct and separate being which is something quite 
original and a thing in itself, analogous to the meta- 
physical things in themselves of Kantian philosophy. 
But this notion of oneself is an error ; it is what Bud- 
dhists call "the illusion of the thought 'I am,'" or 
" the veil of Maya." 

The central idea of Buddhism is the doctrine that 
enlightenment dispels the ego-illusion, and Goethe 
says tersely : 

" 'Cognise thyself,' 'tis said. How does self-knowledge pay? 
When I cognise myself, /must at once away." 

" Erkenne dich ! — Was hab ich da fur Lohn ? 
Erkenn' ich mich, so muss ich gleich davon." 

Goethe was a man of great self-assertion and it is 
apparent that he does not mean self-annihilation or 
resignation. Goethe does not mean to say that he 
himself (Goethe or Goethe's soul) does not exist. He 
means that that vanity of self which imagines that a 
man's self consists in an independent and quite orig- 
inal being which is exclusively a thing of its own is an 
illusion that is dispelled by self-knowledge. 

" I " am not a separate ego-consciousness that is 
in possession of a soul with all its impulses, thoughts, 
and aspirations. Rather the reverse is true. My soul, 
consisting of definite soul-structures, is in possession 
of an ego consciousness ; and my entire soul is meant 
when I say " I." In this sense every one can say of 
himself, "I existed long before I was born." To be 
sure I did not exist in this exact combination of soul- 
elements ; but the soul-elements of my Karma' ex- 

Such is the Buddhistic doctrine, and such is Goe- 
the's view of the soul. The words which constitute 
our thought, the most essential part of ourselves, were 
first uttered millenniums ago, and have been handed 
down with imperceptible changes in pronunciation, 
grammar, and construction until they have become 
again incarnated in the system of our mind. But it is 
not our language alone that existed before us, but also 
our habits of daily life, our modes of living, our loves 
and hates, our morals, our hopes, and our aspirations. 
Goethe says : 

\SfrHche in Prosa, Edition Cotta, Vol. XIII., p. 274. 



" When eagerly a child looks round, 

In his father's house his shelter is found. 
His ear, beginning to understand, 
Imbibes the speech of his native land. 

Whatever his own experiences are. 

He hears of other things afar. 

Example affects him ; he grows strong and steady 

Yet finds the world complete and ready. 

This is prized, and that praised with much ado ; 
He wishes to be somebody too. 
How can he work and woo, how fight and frown ? 
For everything has been written down. 

Nay, worse, it has appeared in print. 
The youth is baffled but takes the hint. 
It dawns on him, now, more and more 
He is what others have been before." 

" Wenn Kindesblick begierig schaut, 
Er findet des Vaters Haus gebaut ; 
Und wenn das Ohr sich erst vertraut, 
Ihm tout der Muttersprache Laut ; 
Gewahrt er diess und jenes nah, 
Man fabelt ihm, was fern geschah, 
Umsittigt ihn, wachs't er heran : 
Er findet eben alles gethan ; 
Man riihmt ihm diess, man preis't ihm das : 
Er ware gar gern auch etwas. 
Wie er soil wirken, schaffen, lieben. 
Das steht ja alles schon geschrieben 
Und, was noch schlimmer ist, gedruckt. 
Da steht der junge Mensch verduckt 
Und endlich wird ihm offenbar : 
Er sei nur was ein andrer war." 

The idea that we are an individual in the literal 
sense of the word, i. e., an indivisible soul-being; a 
genuine unity but not a unification ; a kind of spirit- 
monad, seems at first sight to flatter our vanity, be- 
cause it renders us independent of our own past that 
produced us, and ignores the debt we owe to our 
spiritual and physical ancestry, giving us the appear- 
ance of originality. With a good deal of humor Goethe 
describes this craving of our natural vanity in these 
lines : 

" Would from tradition break away, 
Original I'd be ! 
Yet the feat so grand, to my dismay, 

Greatly discomfits me. 
The honor of being an autochthon' 

Would be a great ambition, 
But strange enough, I have to own, 
I am myself tradition." 

" Gern war ich Ueberliefrung los 
Und ganz original ; 
Doch ist das Unternehmen gross 
Und fiihrt in manche Qual. 
Als Autochthone rechnet' ich 
Es mir zur hochsten Ehre, 
Wenn ich nicht gar zu wunderlich 
Selbst Ueberliefrung ware." 

1 From aiJr(3f, self, and ;t;i?a>v, earth, meaning "sprung from the earth, 
an aboriginal inhabitant"; here, "unconditioned by history." 

The two last lines express in simple terms the sub- 
stance of both, the ancient Buddhist doctrine of Karma 
and modern psychology. We do not have our thoughts, 
habits, and aspirations, but we are they. That which 
existed before us and is being handed down from gen- 
eration to generation, is our own pre-existence. We 
do not receive the tradition of the past, but we our- 
selves are this tradition as it has been shaped by the 
Karma of the past. 

This conception of the soul seems to lead to a 
splitting up of our existence into as many personali- 
ties as receive the soul-seeds of our Karma. But the 
splitting up is not an absorption into a vague and in- 
definite half-existence, but rather a duplication and 
multiplication of our soul in the way a pattern is re- 
produced, or as a book that is printed in many copies 
may sow the seed of the author's thought in its en- 
tirety in the hearts of innumerable readers. There is 
a splitting up, but no division ; there is a scattering of 
our spiritual treasures, but everywhere the soul re- 
mains entire, both in its inner sentiments and outer 
forms. Says Goethe : 

" Life I never can divide, 

Inner and outer together you see. 
Whole to all I must abide. 

Otherwise I cannot be. 
Always I have only writ 

What I feel and mean to say. 
Thus, my friends, although I split. 

Yet remain I one alway." 

" Theilen kann ich nicht das Leben, 
Nicht das Innen noch das Aussen, 
Allen muss das Ganze geben, 
Um mit euch und mir zu hausen, 
Immer hab ich nur geschrieben 
Wie ich fiihle, wie ich's meine, 
Und so spalt ich mich, ihr Lieben, 
Und bin immerfort der Eine." 

This conception of our own being is of practical im- 
portance, for it teaches us to think with reverence of the 
past, and to contemplate with earnestness the future. 
Our existence is not limited to the span of the present 
life; it is not limited by birth and death; it began 
with the appearance of life upon earth ; nay, it is older 
than that even ; for it lay hidden in the conditions of 
organised life, whatever they may have been ; and we 
shall continue to live so long as mankind will flourish 
on earth, nay, even longer; for wherever the same 
soul-structures rise, there our soul will be formed again 
and rise anew into being. In a word, our soul is illim- 
ited, in the past as well as in the future. Eternity lies 
behind us and also before us. 

Goethe believes in immortality. He says : 

" ' Hast immortality in mind 

Wilt thou thy reasons give ?' 
— The most important reason is, 
We can't without it live." 



" ' Du hast Unsterblichkeit im Sinn ; 
Kannst du uns deine Griinde nennen ?' 
Gar wohl ! Der Hauptgrund liegt darin, 
Dass wir sie nicht entbehren konnen." 

Goethe does not believe that immortality involves 
the belief in a Utopian heaven, and, like Buddha, he 
urges that if such a heaven existed, as many Chris- 
tians imagine it to be, it would not be a place of sal- 
vation, but a mere transfiguration of the trivialities of 
this world. Thus Goethe prefers to be counted among 
the Sadducees, of whom the Scriptures say, they hold 
that there is no resurrection from the dead. Goethe 

says : 

" A Sadducee I'll be fore'er, 
For it would drive me to despair, 
If the Philistines who now cramp me 
Would cripple my eternity. 
'Twould be the same old fiddle-faddle, 
In heaven we'd have celestial twaddle." 

" Ein Sadducaer will ich bleiben ! — 
Das konnte mich zur Verzweiflung treiben, 
Dass von dem Volk, das hier mich bedrangt, 
Auch wUrde die Ewigkeit eingeengt : 
Das war doch nur der alte Patsch, 
Droben gab's nur verklarten Klatsch." 

Immortality is not an intrinsic condition of our 
soul, but can only be the result of our exertions. We 
do not possess immortality, but we must earn it. 
As Christ expresses it, we must lay up treasures which 
neither moth nor rust doth corrupt and where the 
thieves do not break through or steal. We are tradi- 
tion and we live on as tradition. Our own immortali- 
sation is the purpose of our life. Goethe says: 

"Drop all of transiency 
Whate'er be its claim. 
Ourselves to immortalise. 
That is our aim." 

" Nichts vom Verg'anglichen, 
Wie's auch geschah ! 
Uns zu verewigen 
Sind wir ja da." 

The Egyptian method of immortalising the bodies 
of the dead by embalming and mummifying, and of 
building pyramids is erroneous; rather let the tradi- 
tion of which we consist and which we impart to 
others be of the right kind. The greatest treasures 
we can give to others are we ourselves, our souls, the 
truths which we have discovered our hopes, our loves, 
our ideals. Goethe says : 

" It matters not, I ween. 

Where worms our friends consume, 
Beneath the turf so green, 

Or 'neath the marble tomb. 
Remember ye who live, 

Though frowns the fleeting day. 
That to your friends you give 
What never will decay." 

— Translated by Edgar Alfred Bowring, 

" Und wo die Freunde faulen. 
Das ist ganz einerlei, 
Ob unter Marmor-Saulen 
Oder im Rasen frei. 
Der Lebende bedenke, 
Wenn auch der Tag ihm mault, 
Dass er den Freunden schenke 
Was nie und nimmer fault." 

Goethe's idea of salvation, as exemplified in Faust, 
is self-salvation through our own deeds. He says : 

"Yes ! to this thought I hold with firm persistence ; 
The last result of wisdom stamps it true : 
He only earns his freedom and existence. 

Who daily conquers them anew. 
Then dared I hail the Moment fleeing: 

'Ah, still delay — thou art so fair! ' 
The traces cannot, of mine earthly being, 
In aeons perish, — they are there ! " 

— Translated by Bayard Taylor 

" Ja ! diesem Sinne bin ich ganz ergeben. 
Das ist der Weisheit letzter Schluss; 
Nur der verdient sich Freiheit wie das Leben. 
Der t'aglich sie erobern muss. 
Zum Augenblicke diirft' ich sagen : 
Verweile doch, du bist so schon ! 
Es kann die Spur von meinen Erdetagen 
Nicht in Aeonen untergehn. — " 
Life possesses no intrinsic value ; the worth of a 
man depends entirely upon himself. Says Goethe : 

"Thy worth wouldst thou have recognised ? 
Give to the world a worth that 's prized ! " 

" Willst du dich deines Werthes freuen. 
So musst der Welt du Werth verleihen." 

The Buddhist's Nirvana is the obliteration of the 
ego-illusion; it .is the annihilation of the error of self- 
hood, but not an annihilation of man's soul or of the 
world. Nirvana is not death, but life ; it is the right 
way of living, to be obtained by the conquest of all the 
passions that becloud the mind. Nirvana is the rest 
in activity, the tranquillity of a man who has risen 
above himself and has learned to view life in its eter- 
nal aspects. True rest is not quietism, but a well- 
balanced activity. It is a surrender of self in exchange 
for the illimitable life of the evolution of truth. It is 
in our life and life aspirations the entire omission of 
the thought of self, of the conceit " Mark all the world, 
'tis I who do this "; and the surrender of all egotistic 
petulancy is not (as the egotistic imagine) a resigna- 
tion, but it is bliss. Says Goethe, in his poem "Eins 
und Alles": 

" Into the limitless to sink. 
No one, I trow, will ever blink. 

For there all sorrow we dismiss. 

Instead of cravings and wants untold 

Fatiguing demands and duties cold. 

Surrender of one's self is bliss." 

" Im Grenzenlosen sich zu finden, 
Wird gern der Einzelne verschwinden, 



Da lost sich aller Ueberdruss ; 
Statt heissem Wiinschen, wildem Wollen, 
Statt last'gem Fordern, strengem SoUen, 
Sich aufzugeben ist Genuss." 

Contemplation and retirement have their charms 
and are preferable to the turmoil of a worldly life, and 
Goethe appreciated the sweetness of seclusion. He 
said in his "Song to the Moon": 

"Happy he who, hating none, 
Leaves the world's dull noise, 
And, with trusty friends alone. 
Quietly enjoys 

What, forever unexpressed. 

Hid from common sight. 
Through the mazes of the breast 

Softly steals by night ! " 

— Translated by J. S. Dtvight. 

" Selig, wer sich vor der Welt 
Ohne Hass verschliesst, 
Einen Freund am Busen halt 
Und mit dem geniesst, 

Was, von Menschen nicht gewusst, 
Oder nicht gedacht, 
Durch das Labyrinth der Brust 
Wandelt in der Nacht." 

Such being Goethe's view of the soul and the aspi- 
rations of man, as expressed in his own verses, we 
shall find it natural that his God-conception is more 
like Amitabha than like Zeus or Yahveh. Goethe's 
God is not an individual being; not a person. He 
says : 

"Why do you scoff and scout, ' 
About the All and One. 
The professor 's a person, no doubt, 
God is none." 

" Was soil mir euer Hohn 
Ueber das All und Eine? 
Der Professor ist eine Person, 
Gott ist keine." 

Nor does Goethe expect help from heaven ; he has 
learned to rely on himself. He makes Prometheus 
say : 

" When in my childhood 

I knew not where to turn, 

My seeking eyes strayed sunward. 

As though there were in heaven 

An ear to listen to my prayer, 

A heart like mine, 

To feel for my distress compassion. 

Who helped me 

Against the Titans insolence ? 

And who delivered me from death ? 

Didst thou not rescue thee, thyself, 

My holy, glowing heart, 

In goodness and in youth 

Aglow with gratitude, deceived, 
For the slumb'ring God above ! " 

" Da ich ein Kind war, 
Nicht wusste, wo aus noch ein, 
Kehrt' ich mein verirrtes Auge 
Zur Sonne, als wenn druber war' 
Ein Ohr, zu horen meine Klage, 
Ein Herz, wie mains, 
Sich des Bedrangten zu erbarmen. 

Wer half mir 

Wider der Titanen Uebermut ? 

Wer rettete vom Tode mich. 

Von Sklaverei ? 

Hast du nicht alles selbst vollendet, 

Heilig gliihend Herz ? 

Und glUhtest Jung und gut, 

Betrogen, Rettungsdank 

Dem Schlafenden da droben ?" 

Goethe's God is the eternal in the transient, the 
immutable in the change and the rest that the thought- 
ful will discover in the ever agitated evolution of cir- 
cling worlds : God, in a word, is the cosmic Nirvana, 
the rest in unrest, the peace in strife, and the bliss 
that is attained in the tribulations of noble aspirations. 
Goethe says : 

" When in the infinite appeareth 
The same eternal repetition, 
When in harmonious coalition 
A mighty dome its structure reareth ; 

A rapture thrills through all existence 
All stars, or great or small are blessed, 

Yet all the strife and all resistance 
In God, the Lord's eternal rest." 

" Wenn im Unendlichen dasselbe 
Sich wiederholend ewig fliesst, 
Das tausendfaltige Gewolbe 
Sich kraftig in einander schliesst, 
Stromt Lebenslust aus alien Dingen, 
Dem kleinsten wie dem griJssten Stern, 
Und alles Driingen, alles Ringen 
Ist ewige Ruh in Gott dem Herrn." 

Whatever Buddha's doctrines may have been, this 
much is sure, that the principle of Buddhism is the 
same as the principle of the Religion of Science; for 
Buddhism is the religion of enlightenment, and en- 
lightenment means a perfect comprehension of the 
significance of life in matters of religion. On this 
point, too, Goethe expressed himself in unequivocal 
terms. He equals in breadth Buddhism, and thus 
did not reject the Christian religion, but only refused 
to be limited by the narrowness of its dogmatism. 
Goethe accepted the truths which Christianity had 
given to the world ; and mark the reason why he ac- 
cepts them : Because they cannot be claimed as the 
exclusive possession of a sect, but are the heirloom of 
all mankind, therefore, he contends, the "scientist" 
has a right to them ; and identifying his right with that 
of the scientist, Goethe claims them for himself. 



Addressing the Christian believers, Goethe says : 

"Ye faithful, do not claim that your confession 
Be truth alone ; for we have faith like you. 
Science can't be deprived of the possession 
Belonging to the world, and to me too." 

"Ihr Glaubigen ! riihmt nur nicht euern Glauben 
Als einzigen : wir glauben auch wie ihr ; 
Der Forscher lasst sich keineswegs berauben 
Des Erbtheils, aller Welt gegonnt — und mir." 

How near Goethe comes in these lines to call his 
faith "the religion of science"! 

The fact that Goethe's conception of the soul is in 
perfect agreement with Buddha's teachings, is the 
more remarkable as Goethe was not familiar even with 
the mere outlines of the Buddhistic Abhidharma. 

There are many similar agreements that can be 
traced between Buddhism and the tenets of modern 
science, especially psychology ; and this is not at all 
surprising, for Buddhism is a religion which recog- 
nises no other revelation except the truth that can 
be proved by science. Buddha teaches his disciples 
to contemplate the facts of life without distorting them 
by postulates or metaphysical assumptions. His re- 
ligion is the most radical freethought, that blinks 
no consequences nor allows himself to be misguided 
by phantasms of the heart; yet at the same time, it is 
the most earnest devotion to truth, for the salient fea- 
ture of Buddhism has always been that the surrender 
of the ego-illusion does not remain a mere theory but 
becomes a maxim of conduct, which induces Buddha's 
followers to renounce all egotism, to exert themselves 
in brotherly love and purity of heart, to devote them- 
selves to the welfare of their fellow-creatures, and 
above all, to serve the needs of those who toil and 

Christ taught by example, and in pithy aphorisms 
and parables, an ethics which closely agrees with Bud- 
dhistic ethics ; but he taught no philosophy and no 
systematic religious dogma. Christ's ethics exhibits 
a broad humanitarianism, and the figure of Christ 
stands before us as the ecce homo — the son of man, the 
representative of mankind. The church that developed 
from the moral movement started by Christ has sup- 
plemented the theoretical doctrines which Christ had 
neglected to teach, but unfortunately the dogmatists 
of the Church replaced the broad ecce homo by a nar- 
row ecce ego ; and thus the assumptions of the ego- 
ps3'chology have become officially recognised as Chris- 
tian dogmas. Yet I venture to say that those two 
masters in the world of thought, Buddha and Goethe 
are nearer to the spirit of Christ than those who bear 
his name and call themselves his disciples. If Chris- 
tian dogmatists would begin to listen to the teachings 
of science, they might at last be converted to the 
ethics of their master. p. c. 


The German Emperor, and with him the whole 
German nation, have, for their cousins on the other 
side of the Channel, a very sensitive conscience. 
Would that they kept enough of it for home use, for 
right in the heart of the German Empire, in the cap- 
ital of Prussia, the most outrageous and illegal acts on 
the part of the German government and police ad- 
ministration take place without in the least ruffling the 
sense of justice of any one of the German authorities. 

The laws of Prussia, since the days of Frederick 
the Great, guarantee religious liberty to all Prussian 
subjects, and the law has been expressly extended to 
imply the right of parents to have their children edu- 
cated in their own religion in a clause of May 14, 1873, 
which declares that "dissenters shall be entitled to 
withdraw their children from the religious instruction 
in the common schools, provided that they supple- 
ment otherwise their religious education." Now there 
are in Germany a number of free-religious congrega- 
tions, most of which developed about fifty years ago 
from German Catholic secessionists. They no longer 
call themselves Christians and openly avow Panthe- 
ism. Their organ, the Freireligioses Famtlienblat/, 
bears the motto, "The world governs itself according 
to eternal laws," and their aim is "to replace the su- 
pernaturalism of dogmatic Christianity by a world- 
conception based upon the discoveries of science." 
The speakers of these congregations were suffered for 
a long time to pursue their profession without disturb- 
ance, but a few years ago (on June 8, 1893) the Royal 
Board of School Superintendents proclaimed an ordi- 
nance that even dissenters should be obliged to have 
their children participate in the religious instruction 
of the public common schools, unless they provide for 
other religious instruction, the sufficiency of which de- 
pends in each case upon the decision of the authori- 
ties." This means, liberty at the option of the gov- 
ernment. At the same time when this ordinance was 
passed. Dr. Bruno Wille, the speaker the free reli- 
gious congregation at Berlin, was enjoined to discon- 
tinue his instruction. All appeals were of no effect, 
because the Prussian government takes the ground 
that all instruction, including private lessons, is a con- 
cern of public welfare, being as such subject to the 
regulations of the School Board, and ultimately to the 
Minister of Education. Dr. Bruno Wille discontinued 
his religious lessons but he continued for ten Sundays 
to preach at the usual hour, and the Royal School 
Board, taking the ground that his sermons were held 
in the presence of children and that a song sung by 
the congregation was explained by the speaker, fined 
him with a penalty of one hundred marks for each 
trespass of the ordinance, i. e., one thousand marks ; 
or, in case he was incompetent to pay, condemned 



him to an imprisonment of one hundred days. The 
verdict was promptly executed, and Dr. Bruno Wille 
was imprisoned at the police-prison of Friedrichs- 
hagen. This actually happened, not during the Middle 
Ages, but a few months ago, in the civilised kingdom 
of Prussia. It happened at about the same time that 
Hammerstein, editor of the Kreuzzeitung and leader 
of the aristocratic Conservative Party, was arraigned 
for bribe-taking, blackmail, forgery, and a number of 
similar crimes ; yet in this case the police were ex- 
tremely slow and gave the criminal ample time to es- 

It appears that the warden of the prison at Fried- 
richshagen is a man of a more tender conscience than 
the members of the School Board and the Minister of 
Education in Prussia. For we read in the Freireligioses 
Familienblatt that he allowed the prisoner as much 
liberty as the law permitted, and treated him respect- 
fully. Dr. Wille was allowed to write and to read, 
and to send out his fly leaves to the children of his 

Before having served his full term of one hundred 
days, Dr. Wille was dismissed on parole in Decem- 
ber, 1895, and when lecturing again for the first time 
to a large audience, he spoke on "Independence." 
While the congregation enjoyed the temporary free- 
dom of their speaker, their indignation was aroused 
by the news that another of their members. Miss Ida 
Altmann, the Sunday-school teacher of the free reli- 
gious congregation, had just been imprisoned for the 
same reason as their beloved lecturer. 

A petition for redress was made to the Prussian 
House of Representatives, but the government ad- 
vised that the petition be put on the table, and the 
House took no notice of it because at its introduction 
the motion for adjournment had been made. 

All this happened in a country which boasts of 
being the nation of poets and thinkers, in the very 
same State in which one of the greatest sovereigns 
declared that in his dominions everybody could find 
salvation after his own fashion ! 

It is good that the great nations of the world are 
beginning to have a conscience, and that one is de- 
manding of the other to keep within the bounds of jus- 
tice. When the German governor of the German col- 
ony in Africa maltreated his black soldiers, the poor 
creatures seeing no hope for redress, allowed them- 
selves to seek self-help in a revolutionary outburst 
against their oppressors. They bombarded in their 
rage the citadel, but did little harm and nobody was 
killed. When the ammunition was exhausted, the 
negroes fled into the woods, where naturally enough 
they were starved, and the Governor had every one of 
them hanged as soon as he returned, without a court- 
martial. Was kommt wird gehangen, was the laconic 

report of an eye-witness. The event, at the time, 
passed by unnoticed, as if nothing had happened, and 
England said nothing about this outrage ; and why 
should she? for, indeed, the English would scarcely 
have acted differently under the same circumstances. 

The German Emperor set the good example that 
one government should look after the morality of other 
governments, and we hope that his indignation will 
be a precedent which will not remain limited to the 
wrong-doings of England ; but that England will in 
her turn also call the attention of the German au- 
thorities to their own wrong-doings. 

Would that the Queen of England had heard of 
the suppression of religious liberty and had sent a 
message of sympathy to Dr. Bruno Wille encouraging 
him to bear his martyrdom with dignity and to stand 
up for his rights with manly courage ! p. c. 



Born to immortal life ! this earth-clad soul 

Partakes the eternal nature of its God ! 
Will live when aeons have unrolled the scroll 

Of time ; when, laid beneath the parent sod, 
Mortality hath claimed the mortal clay; 
And Death, whose final voice we all obey, 
Hath borne the spirit through the darkened door 

That leads from finite to Infinity, 
To usher it, undying evermore. 

Into the presence of Eternity! 

N. B.— By special arrangements with tlie Cosmopolitan Publishing 
Company we are enabled to offer a full year's subscription to the two 
magazines, THE COSMOPOLITAN and THE OPEN COURT, at the un- 
usually low price of $1.75. This advantageous offer holds good for all 
new subscriptions and for renewals, until retracted.— The Open Court 
Publishing Company. 



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LIFE. C. Arnold F. Lindorme 4831 




Deathless. Robert M. Harper 4838 


The Open Court. 



No. 446. (Vol. X.— II.) 

CHICAGO, MARCH 12, 1896. 

Copyright by The Open Court Publishing Co.— Reprints are permitted only on condition of giving full credit to author and publishe 



Ma"rch the seventeenth, — which devotees hold to 
be not only Patrick's deathday but his birthday, — this 
year finds Ireland more peaceful and comfortable than 
for many years past, perhaps because the prospects of 
Home Rule have become so dim. The Irish political 
camps, while celebrating the same Saint, exhibit the 
discords by which Home Rule has committed sui- 
cide. The old enthusiasms for the abstractions called 
"States" are yielding before the interest in beings 
who can hunger and suffer; the once illustrious Order 
of St. Patrick is now represented by the St. Patrick 
Benevolent Society, which for one hundred and twelve 
years has been taking care of poor Irish children in 
London. In London the Saint is associated with har- 
monies, concerts of Irish music and ballads being 
given on his day in various halls. It is a fact not 
generally known that there are more than two thou- 
sand and five hundred different Irish tunes, some of 
rare beauty being almost forgotten. St. Patrick is the 
only Saint of the calendar whose day revives the old 
melodies of his country. 

It is a unique thing that any historical person 
should survive in commemorations fourteen centuries 
after his death. No mere individual greatness has 
ever lasted that long in popular enthusiasm : for such 
immortality the man must be deprived of much of his 
individuality, and of his family name, be made into a 
racial or sectarian figurehead, pictured on a flag. All 
that has been done for the Somerset gentleman, Mr. 
Sochet, now known as St. Patrick. Yet beneath this 
conventionalised figure — a virtual deity — there is dis- 
coverable an actual personality ; a thing so unparal- 
leled in hagiology that I suppose it may interest read- 
ers of The Open Court to follow some vestiges of the 
real man. His existence has been doubted, not with- 
out some grounds. In the same century (fifth) three 
St. Patricks (i. e.. Holy Fathers or Patres) are trace- 
able in the same region, and one of them called Senn 
Patrick looks in certain lights, so to say, as if he might 
have been the man of whom our Saint was the myth- 
ical ghost. But after considerable investigation I 
should rather conclude that Senn Patrick (i. e., Patrick 
Senior) may have been a sort of projection of the real 

man back to the glorification of his father. However 
this may be, there seems to be no reason to doubt 
that a missionary in Ireland, who called himself Pat- 
rick, did in the fifth century write two brief tractates, 
— one entitled his "Confession," the other his "Let- 
ter to Coroticus." The sufficient antiquity of these 
works is unquestionable. That they were not forged 
by any Roman Catholic is rendered certain by the fact 
that they do not contain the faintest intimation of any 
connexion of Patrick with Rome, or of any papal com- 
mission, or of any observance by him of the mass. 
From the first it has been of great importance to the 
Catholic Church to associate Patrick with these things, 
but the two writings bear witness against such claims. 
As little can we suppose those writings forged by any 
Celtic disciple, for soon after their period biographies 
of Patrick began to appear, and they are all full of 
miracles, whereas the two compositions are totally free 
from any such miracles. The nearest thing to a mira- 
cle related by Patrick is his dream that he was to go 
on a ship, and his finding the ship two hundred miles 
away. He has visions and dreams but none of them 
are miraculous, and the absence of miraculous stories, 
as contrasted with the vast mythology with which he 
was invested in the century following, would alone 
stamp these simple writings as genuine. But apart 
from all this, the literary expert will at once recognise 
a genuine narrator in the works, from which I quote a 
few passages, selected mainly with reference to their 
autobiographical value. The "Confession," written 
at an advanced age, opens as follows : 

"I, Patrick, a sinner, the rudest and the least of 
all the faithful, and most contemptible to very many, 
had for my father Calphornius, a deacon, a son of Po- 
titus, a presbyter, who dwelt in the village of Bonna- 
ven, Taberniae, for he had a small farm hard by the 
place where I was taken captive. I was then nearly 
sixteen years old. I did not know the true God ; and 
I was taken to Ireland in captivity with so many thou- 
sand men, in accordance with our deserts, because we 
departed from God, and we kept not his precepts, and 
were not obedient to our priests who admonished us 
for our salvation." 

(The place of Patrick's birth has long been in dis- 
pute, and in the encyclopsedias it is usually given as 



Dumbarton, Scotland ; but the only thorough investi- 
gation of the point ever made was that of the learned 
Irish scholars appointed some thirty years ago to edit 
the " Senchus Mor," or ancient Irish laws ; and in the 
preface to the second of their four volumes may be 
found an exploration of the facts showing, conclusively 
as I think, that Patrick was born about A. D. 386, in 
a village called Nemphthur, surrounding a tower which 
still stands on a hill just outside of Glastonbury, that 
his father was a decurion, or town councillor, a man of 
high rank, and that the lad was carried off by the Irish 
from a point near Bristol. I must not occupy your 
space with the details of the Commissioners' argu- 
ment, for which those interested in the point must 
refer to their invaluable work. I now proceed to fur- 
ther passages :) 

" I thought of writing long ago, but hesitated even 
till now ; because I feared falling into the tongue of 
men, because I have not learned like others who have 
drunk in, in the best manner, both law and sacred 
literature, in both ways equally, and have never 
changed their language, but have always added more 
to its perfection. For our language and speech is 
translated into a foreign tongue." . . . 

"But therefore be astonished, both great and 
small, who fear God. And ye rhetoricians, who do 
not know the Lord, hear and examine : Who aroused 
me, a fool, from the midst of those who appear to be 
wise, and skilled in the laws, and powerful in speech 
and in every matter ? And me — who am detested by 
this world — He has inspired me beyond others (if in- 
deed I be such), but on condition that with fear and 
reverence, and without complaining, I should faith- 
fully serve the nation to which the love of Christ has 
transferred me, and given me for my life, if I should 
be worthy.". . . From Chapter II.: "After I had come 
to Ireland, I daily used to feed cattle, and I prayed 
frequently during the day : the love of God and the 
fear of Him increased more and more, and faith be- 
came stronger, and the spirit was stirred ; so that in 
one day I said about a hundred prayers, and in the 
night nearly the same ; so that I used even to remain 
in the woods and in the mountain ; before daylight I 
used to rise to prayer, through snow, through rain, 
through frost, and felt no harm. . . . And there indeed 
one night, in my sleep, I heard a voice saying to me, 
' Thou fastest well ; thou shalt soon go to thy coun- 
try. ' And again, after a very short time, I heard a 
response, 'Behold thy ship is ready.' And it was not 
near, but perhaps two hundred miles away, and I 
never had been there, nor was I acquainted with any 
of the men there. After this I took flight and left the 
man with v/hom I had been six years, and I came in the 
strength of the Lord, who directed my way for good, 
and I feared nothing, till I arrived at the ship. And 

on that same day on which I arrived, the ship moved out 
of its place, and I asked the sailors that I might sail 
with them. And it displeased the captain, and he 
answered sharply and with indignation, ' Do not by 
any means try to go with us.' When I heard this, I 
left them for the hut where I lodged, and on the way 
began to pray; and before I ended my prayer I heard 
one of them calling loudly after me, ' Come quickly, 
for these men are calling you.' " 

From Chapter III.: " I was in the Britains with 
my parents who . . . earnestly besought me that . . . 
after the many hardships I had endured I would never 
leave them again. And [after a few years] there I 
saw, in the bosom of the night, a man coming as it 
were from Ireland, Victorious by name, with innu- 
merable letters, and he gave one of them to me. And 
I read the beginning of the letter containing ' The 
Voice of the Irish.' And while I was reading it . . . 
I thought in my mind that I heard the voice of those 
near the wood of Foclut [in Ireland], close by the 
Western Sea, and they cried out to me . . . ' We en- 
treat thee, holy youth, that thou come and henceforth 
walk among us.' And I was deeply moved in heart, 
and so I awoke." 

In his letter to Coroticus, a Welsh prince who had 
piratically carried off from Ireland some of his con- 
verts, Patrick casually says that by voluntarily leaving 
his parents and friends for Ireland he greatly afflicted 
them, and "offended certain of my seniors. It was 
not my grace, but God, who conquered in me, and re- 
sisted them all ; so that I came to the Irish peoples to 
preach the Gospel, and to suffer insults from unbe- 
lievers ; that I should listen to reproach about my 
wandering, and endure many persecutions, even to 
chains ; and that I should give up my noble birth 
for the benefit of others." This letter also says: 
"I, Patrick, a sinner, unlearned, declare indeed that 
I have been appointed a bishop in Ireland ; I most 
certainly believe that from God I have received what 
I am. I dwell thus among barbarians, a proselyte and 
exile, on account of the love of God." The "wander- 
ing" for which he was reproached appears by another 
passage to have been some transgression of his boy- 
hood, which was brought up against him, no doubt at 
Glastonbury, when he was appointed a bishop for Ire- 
land. With reference to the "chains," it should be 
mentioned that this letter was written before the 
"Confession," in the earlier part of his mission, which 
began about the year 432. There is evidence that his 
persecutions by the Irish were brief, and he became 
dear to the kings even before they were converted. 
His chief opponents appear to have been some Chris- 
tian priests. This opposition seems explicable only 
on the supposition that Patrick had come to Ireland 
without papal commission, to which he must surely 



have referred, had he possessed it, in declaring his 
episcopate, in the passage just quoted. He asserts 
that he received his authority from God. Before Pat- 
rick's arrival after ordination. Pope Celestine had sent 
to Ireland Bishop Palladius, also entitled "St. Pat- 
rick"; but his mission had proved a failure, and he 
left the island, possibly driven out, the year before 
our Patrick came, to be assigned the title of his prede- 
cessor, and to succeed where Palladius had failed. 
Rome was thus left out of the movement altogether, 
and those priests who had been working with Palla- 
dius would naturally resent a success which implied 
no triumph for Catholicism. Although Patrick did 
found monasteries, no sacramental conditions are in- 
dicated, and such retreats were not exclusively Chris- 
tian, and in his writings there is no assertion of any 
dogma or rite distinctively Catholic. Patrick was 
continually on his defence, and this will explain the 
apparent self-assertion in the passages I have quoted. 
Really he was a man of as much humility as self- 
reliance. He was particular about receiving presents, 
often refusing them, and calls on all and each to say 
whether he owes him anything. He will restore it 
fourfold. Women brought him gifts, or cast their 
ornaments on the altar. "I used to return these to 
them, although it offended them. It was in order to 
bear myself prudently in everything, so that the un- 
believing may not catch me on any pretext, or the 
ministry of my service." He seems to have had a cer- 
tain susceptibility to feminine graces. "There was 
one blessed Scottish maiden, of adult age, nobly born, 
very beautiful, whom I baptised. And after a few days 
she came to us for a reason, and intimated that she 
had received a response from a messenger of God . . . 
that she should be a virgin of Christ." Patrick states 
that it was chiefly on account of these "handmaidens" 
that his conscience would not permit him to journey 
abroad, as he longed to do, and visit the saints and 
teachers in Gaul. 

In the " Senchus Mor," already mentioned, it is 
shown that between the years 438-441, a commission 
in Ireland collected and wrote out its ancient laws. 
This work was done by three "pagan" kings, two 
doctors (antiquarians), one poet, and three Christian 
prelates. Of the latter, Patrick was chief, and he 
brought with him a written code, from which the 
"pagans" accepted some laws, while Patrick sanc- 
tioned all of the old Irish laws which were not posi- 
tively inconsistent with his Christianity. But his 
Christianity, whatever it may have been, evidently 
did not include the ecclesiastical provisions concern- 
ing women, for these ancient Irish laws, sanctioned 
by Patrick, are notably just to woman. The laws con- 
cerning women remained in force until about three hun- 
dred years ago, when English laws were substituted, 

but recent reforms of these more modern laws have 
but recovered the large equality between husband and 
wife, which characterised the ancient laws of Ireland. 
The participation of Patrick in establishing such non- 
Catholic laws, and his friendly co-operation with "pa- 
gan" doctors and kings in such work, sufficiently ex- 
plain priestly accusations against him, and also his 
deep hold on the Irish heart. He built up an inde- 
pendent Celtic Church ; he became the Celtic Pope ; 
indeed, within two centuries after his death, St. Cum- 
mian writes of some observance as "introduced into 
use by our Pope, St. Patrick." 

* * 

When we turn from the real to the legendary Patrick, 
the man seems at first completely hidden under a mot- 
ley mythology. But closer study may find in these fables 
indications of the forces which Patrick brought into 
action, and by which the Celtic Church was evolved. 
The miracles ascribed to St. Patrick present a re- 
markable combination of the Moses-myths and the 
so-called "Druidic" magic. The reader will at once 
recognise the significance of this combination. Moses 
not being a legitimately anointed priest, his "divine 
legation " had to be approved by Yahveh with signs 
and wonders. Patrick being in the same case, and 
not, like his predecessor Palladius, invested with pa- 
pal authority, his Celtic establishment had to invent 
miracles proving the direct divine authentication of 
their founder. Patrick is described as contending 
with the "Druid" soothsayers, outdoing their mira- 
cles, as Moses with the magicians of Egypt. Like 
Moses, he works wonders with a rod (the bacuhis said 
to have been given him by Christ's own hand); the 
burning bush, the plague of darkness, and other Mo- 
saic marvels have corresponding signs in the legend 
of the Irish law-giver. And it is especially remarkable 
that not only the biblical narratives of Moses were 
imported for Patrick, but bits of Eastern folk-lore. 
At Djizeh there was long shown a tree said to have 
grown from the staff of Moses, and at the village of 
"St. Patrice," in France, a winter-flowering prunella 
is still pointed out as having sprung from the staff of 
St. Patrick. He stuck his staff in the snow, and laid 
down expecting to perish, but the staff sheltered him 
with a canopy of blossoms. I know not whether this 
miracle, associated with Arimathean Joseph at Glas- 
tonbury, originated in Ireland ; but Patrick, in many 
ancient pictures, is represented as holding a blossom- 
ing thorn, which, mythologically, is the blossoming of 
Aaron's rod. Moses sought out a lost lamb and carried 
it in his arms ; Patrick does the same for a fawn. The 
most famous of Patrick' s miracles, extermination of the 
snakes, — a story of which priests are ashamed, — is di- 
rectly related to the Eastern folk-tale of Moses and 
Gadelas. Moses having healed Prince Gadelas (Pha- 



raoh's son) of a serpent's bite, declared that wherever 
Gadelas should reign all serpents should disappear. 
And there is an Irish legend that Gadelas came to Ire- 
land, bringing the rod of Moses. Moreover, Josephus 
reports a legend of Moses clearing a region of Ethiopia 
from snakes. Near St. Malo in France there is a large 
beach which at high water becomes an island. Some 
saint, whose name I forget, is believed to have cleared 
it of serpents, and Renan told me that the peasants 
still use a little of the sand as a vermifuge ! 

But if, on the one hand, the heirs of Patrick's in- 
dependent Celtic Church had to claim heavenly signs 
and wonders, resembling those attending Moses, for 
their founder and Northern Pope, on the other hand, 
the sacred traditions of the "pagans" had to be con- 
ciliated. In a very ancient Irish prayer-book Patrick 
is pictured as an Arch-Druid, and many of the mira- 
cles ascribed to him are related to Celtic folk-lore. 
He dries up a flood, turns an unbelieving district into 
a marsh, makes a sacred stone float to bear a leper to 
Ireland, causes one magician to sink into the earth, 
another to be struck by lightning, makes a hideous 
dwarf tall and beautiful, makes a kettle boil with 
blocks of ice, sinks a hostile ship with the sign of the 
cross, calls up or appeases tempests. 

These and other signs and wonders (I omit many) 
all mean the rod of Patrick swallowing up the rods of 
both Pope and pagan, and developing in Ireland not 
merely a Church, but a religion of its own. For grad- 
ually the whole Judaic-Christian system was Celtic- 
ised. There was an Irish Cain and Abel, an Irish 
Deluge ; and in Lough Derg a cavern with three gates 
opening respectively into heaven, hell, and purgatory. 
There was even something like an Irish Trinity : St. 
Patrick (the father), St. Finnian (the son, miracu- 
lously born), St. Columba (dove). St. Bridget filled 
the role of a Madonna, in spiritual exaltation. The 
Irish churches were all dedicated to Irish saints. Ro- 
man Catholicism had no authority in the island until 
the twelfth century, when an English Pope (Break- 
speare) and an English King, Henry II., forced on 
them the Romanism for which Cromwell so punished 
them. But Popery never really took root in Ireland, 
nor in the Irish heart. Whenever England has sought 
papal aid in governing Ireland, they have been con- 
fronted by the revived independence of St. Patrick 
and his non-Catholic Church. The Holy Father at 
Rome may receive formal respect and sentimental de- 
ference, but it is on a tacitly understood condition 
that he does not attempt to interfere with any move- 
ment, organisation, or purpose — political or social — 
of the Irish people. Any such attempt would be in- 
effective, and be laughed at. Roman Catholicism lasts 
in Ireland only because it is nominal. I believe that 
a like indifference to papal wishes is distinctive of the 

rish in America, as compared with Catholics of other 

But this does not imply the least tendency in Celtic 
Ireland towards Protestantism, so called. No Celtic 
community was ever Protestant. It is contrary to the 
genius of the race. There is a foolish notion among 
English sects that the conversion of Ireland to Protes- 
tantism is predestined — a question only of time. With 
such object-lessons in Protestantism at their door as 
Ulster Presbyterianism, and British Sabbatarianism 
with its locked museums and art galleries, it is to be 
hoped that Celtic good sense and taste will escape that 
Dismal Swamp. Protestantism will never make any 
headway in Ireland until it has a deity to carry there 
as fair and as great-hearted as St. Patrick. For Pat- 
rick is the supreme deity of Ireland. The Celtic mind 
is not sceptical ; it is not philosophically speculative; 
it does not expend much thought on the abstract or 
the unknowable. It cherishes St. Patrick in heart 
and household ; its prayers are confided to him as an 
intercessor, and many benefits are ascribed to his lov- 
ing care. Thus the patron-saint has virtually become 
the eternal Father : it is his face the humble peasants 
see in the tender blue of heaven, his smile in the sun- 
shine. The loving God whom Channing and Parker, 
the Unitarians and the theists, have been substituting 
for Jehovah, has for generations been the intimate 
deity of Ireland. 

The cult of St. Patrick has, however, serious draw- 
backs. For one thing he preserves too much the Clan 
spirit, and the ideal of chieftainship. The better ten- 
dency of civilisation is to make less of one's race, or 
even of one's State, and more of man as man. It is 
to be feared that St. Patrick still draws the eyes of 
Ireland too much backward. In their idealisation of 
their Past the Celts almost vie with the Jews. They 
look back to a Golden Age, when their guardian ge- 
nius, their deity, walked with the patriarchal princes 
and the prophet-bards of Erin. All the enchanted 
Isles to which St. Brendan (the Celtic Ulysses) voy- 
aged are gathered in the emerald fields, crystal lakes, 
happy villages, of St. Patrick's Erin-Eden. To this 
paradise the humble Celt fondly looks, believes it was 
lost through a Saxon serpent, and has been taught 
that it might be recovered when the Saint banishes 
the last "reptile" of that race. 

But no paradise can be gained by a people whose 
eyes are at the back of their head. The "Saxon" is 
extinct and legendary. Even another Cromwell is im- 
possible. There is little doubt that Ireland might 
readily be accorded local self-government by bodies 
resembling the County Councils of England. Such a 
system would give that island all substantial advan- 
tages of Home Rule ; and no doubt the masses would 
be presently contented with anything that brought 



them peace and prosperity ; but unfortunately agita- 
tion becomes to some a profession, as we Americans 
saw in Secession times ; and some of their leaders 
seem determined that the Irish people shall have no 
advantages, no real home-rule, which does not take 
the shape of that ideal dominion in the far past — ideal 
that never existed, and can never exist. 

The St. Patrick on whom Ireland may be felici- 
tated is not then the primitive clan-chieftain, not the 
Patrick of political and party banners, but the great- 
hearted religious genius, who folded "pagans" in his 
arms while the rest of Christendom was damning them, 
and who is still living with them as an invisible incar- 
nation of a divine tenderness. His soul marches on ; 
the mythical snake-exterminator still keeps out of 
Celtic Ireland many reptilian dogmas — hard, cruel, in- 
tolerant — which infest other Northern peoples. He 
has kept out of Ireland the paralysing Sabbath, and 
made the Irish Sunday a day of gladness. I like to 
think of him as he is pictured on some ancient church 
windows that I have seen, — a fine example being in 
the Marmoutiers Convent at Tours, — gentle, noble, 
humane, holding in his hand, not the shamrock with 
which he is said to have taught the Trinity, but the 
thorn that blossoms in winter, and said to have flow- 
ered from his staff. Christianity is still made a thorn 
in Scotland, and in Ulster, spiked with dry, dead pierc- 
ing dogmas ; it is still somewhat thorny in England, 
though budding under the humanitarian breath ; but 
in Celtic Ireland, even amid its winter of poverty and 
discontent, the thorn still blossoms in Patrick's hand. 



We present to our readers in the Supplement to 
this number of The Open Court another remarkable 
specimen of the new method of photography by Ront- 
gen's rays. The market is full of these productions, 
but in the vast majority of cases the technical execu- 
tion can hardly be said to be a success. We have cer- 
tainly seen nothing that can compare in delicacy and 
distinctness to the work of the Hamburg State Lab- 
oratory, and both we and our readers have every rea- 
son to feel indebted to Prof. Hermann Schubert for 
his thoughtfulness in promptly furnishing them to us. 

The specimen of the present number is the picture 
of an African dove. To show the contrast of the two 
methods, an ordinary life-sized photograph of the 
dove, giving the exterior of the animal, is placed op- 
posite the Rontgen photograph, which gives the in- 
terior, and notably the skeleton. 

The Rontgen photograph is sometimes called a 
"skiagraph," a word improperly' formed after the 
analogy of " photograph," and meaning shadow-pic- 

1 " Skiagram " would be better. 

ture. As expressing the actual character of the process 
this term is good. The word " actinogram " may also 
be used. Like telegram, it is properly formed, and 
means ray-picture ; it has the advantage of a sug- 
gested relationship with the actinic rays proper, but 
it is not so expressive as the first. "X-gram"and 
"X-picture" have also been suggested, as have also 
" actinography " and "radiography (the first is the 
best) for the process, and it will doubtless be long be- 
fore the ingenuity of the word-makers is exhausted. 

We may now pass on to the mention of a few sim- 
ple facts about the new photography, concerning which 
the newspapers and people generally seem to be either 
confused or misinformed, and shall only stop to no- 
tice that a glance at the pictures of our Supplement 
seems to suggest a near limit to the use of the new 
method in medicine and surgery; for it will be ob- 
served that only the skeleton is visible in the dove, 
while the heart and lungs and other internal organs, 
owing to their high transparency to the rays, are un- 

The Rontgen rays are commonly referred to in the 
newspapers as cathode rays. Strictly viewed, and ac- 
cording to Rontgen's own opinion, this is an error. 
A cursor}' glance at the history of the discovery of the 
rays will elucidate this point. 

It was early noticed that the increase or diminu- 
tion of the atmospheric pressure of a closed receiver 
affected the character of the disruptive discharge be- 
tween the two poles of an electrical machine — the 
passage of sparks with which every one is familiar. 
But most peculiar were the effects induced by a dimi- 
nution of the pressure of the intervening gas. The 
diminution was accomplished by means of vacuum- 
tubes, which contained only very small quantities of 
highly rarefied air, and in which, carefully sealed, pla- 
tinum discs with protruding platinum wires were in- 
serted. To the latter the ends or electrodes of a power- 
ful induction-coil, which is simply a machine for gen- 
erating electric currents, are connected ; and when 
the discharge is made, a fluorescent spot is developed 
on the glass of the tube opposite the negative electrode, 
the so-called cathode. The position of this spot is 
not determined by the position of the positive elec- 
trode, that is, the phenomenon is not developed neces- 
sarily in the line of passage of the disruptive discharge 
between the two electrodes, as can be proved by alter- 
ing the position of the positive electrode, which yet 
does not change the position of the fluorescent spot. 
The fluorescent spot seems to be produced by a bun- 
dle of streamers proceeding in straight lines directly 
from the cathode, and its shape is determined by the 
shape of the disc of the cathode, being outlined by 
the orthogonal trajectory of the same. If a light- 
running paddle-wheel of non-conducting material be 



placed in the path of the discharge, it will be set in 
rotation, exactly as if it were subjected to a hail of 
minute projectiles. This circumstance, and the pro- 
duction of heat at the fluorescent spot, seem to have 
led Professor Crookes to the hypothesis that the above- 
mentioned streamers, which are the cathode rays 
proper, are the paths of rapid movement and bom- 
bardment of tiny material particles. 

This may be made clearer by the help of a diagram. 
Let the adjoined circle represent the cross-section of 
a closed glass receiver con- 
taining rarefied air. Let A 
be the anode, or positive 
pole, and B the cathode, or 
negative pole. The actual 
line of the electric discharge, 
which in the rarefied air is 
almost totally invisible, is be- 
tween A and B, while the 
fluorescent spot appears op- 
posite B in C. Here the line of the electric discharge 
is distinct from the line of the cathode rays, which is 
not the case if anode and cathode stand directly oppo- 
site. Suppose that C be the positive pole, and B the 
negative pole ; the fluorescent spot would then coin- 
cide with the anode, and the electric discharge would 
take place along the same line with the cathode rays. 
If the little paddle wheel be properly placed between 
them, it will rotate in the direction of the cathode 
rays, that is, from ^ to C in the direction from the 
negative to the positive electrode. 

It is important also to note that if a conducting 
obstacle, say a cross of aluminium, be interposed in 
the path of the cathode rays, its shadow will be out- 
lined on the wall opposite, as an interception of an 
equivalent area of the phosphorescent spot. 

Such, then, are the cathode rays. As to the .r-rays, 
their seat of origin is the spot where the cathode rays 
strike the glass. For the cathode rays can be deflected 
within the tube by means of a magnet, and Professor 
Rontgen showed that when this was done, the .*;-rays 
always proceeded from the new point of incidence — 
i. e., from the end of the cathode rays. 

Furthermore, the x-rays, unlike the cathode rays, 
cannot be deflected by a magnet, and this is Rontgen's 
chief ground for concluding that they are not identical 
with the cathode rays. Another reason for this con- 
clusion is that the cathode rays are very rapidly ab- 
sorbed by the air and other bodies, and can only be 
carried a short distance from the tube, while the A--rays 
can be made to produce the fluorescent effect at a 
distance of two metres from the tube. 

This point being clear, we may briefly repeat,' in 
conclusion, the chief properties of Rontgen's rays, as 

1 See No. 441 oJ The Open Court. 

distinguished from the common luminous, thermal, 
and electric rays, taking Rontgen's own exposition of 
the matter and not that of others. 

In the first place, the rays do not affect in any way 
the eye ; the eye sees nothing when exposed to the 
rays. But they affect the photographic dry-plate, even 
through the protecting shutter ; and this affords us a 
means of recording the phenomena. Again, their 
power of permeating objects depends mainly on the 
density and thickness of the object ; hence, their cast- 
ing of shadows and the practicability of photography 
by this means. Further, the rays are incapable of 
regular reflexion and refraction, and consequently they 
cannot be concentrated in a lens. All shadow-pic- 
tures, therefore, are approximately life-size. Lastly, 
the .x-rays show no interference-phenomena, and can- 
not be polarised. 

It was on these grounds, which exclude the possi- 
bility of their being ultra-violet (transverse) vibra- 
tions, that Rontgen concluded they were the longi- 
tudinal vibrations of the ether ; for that they are 
affections of the ether and have thus some kinship 
with light-rays is evident from their throwing shadows 
and their production of fluorescence and other chem- 
ical phenomena. 


In comment on the editorial "Goethe a Buddhist," 
Mr. Thaddeus B. Wakeman writes as follows : 

"I wish you had said that Goethe was a positive, scientific, 
humanitarian Monist. As to Goethe being a 'Buddhist,' pray 
remember that the law of evolution applies to religions and culture, 
and that ages lay between these two exponents of perception, feel- 
ing, and thought. No Asiatic in modern times, much less of old, 
ever did or could, or now does, have any rcat conception of what 
Goethe was trying to express or realise. They had not his Pasl, 
and had no science nor conception of the scientific or objective 
method, and no humanity beyond their race, tribal creed, or caste 

"Excuse this from me ; for I have been living in the patient 
hope that you would recover from this 'Asiatic mildew,' and 
spend no more of your most valuable time in pouring our new 
wine into those old bottles, where it is hopelessly corrupted or 
lost. The historical and even symbolic value of these old-world 
views is very great, but in our Present, and practically applied, 
this old dry-rot of occultism is fatal to all healthy life and activ- 
ity. See Hamlet's soliloquy. We have a cloud of that fog now 
darkening New York, and I have been hoping for your help to 
sweep it out to sea with a healthful breeze from the West, I hope 
yet to hear it coming — and from you ? " 

Lest my articles on Buddhism be misunderstood I 
wish to make the following statements. 

My preference for Buddhism must not be inter- 
preted as an abandonment of the Religion of Science; 
and it is based upon that same opposition to occultism 
which Mr. Wakeman makes; for I, too, regard occul- 
tism as " fatal to all healthy life and activity." 

Buddhism is frequently identified or classed in the 



same category with the various Oriental mystifications ; 
but if rightly understood, it will be seen to be the 
very negation of all mystification in both religion and 
metaphysics. Buddha is, so far as we know, the first 
positivist, the first humanitarian, the first radical free- 
thinker, the first iconoclast, and the first prophet of 
the Religion of Science. The more I became ac- 
quainted with the original writings of I?uddhism, the 
more I was impressed with the greatness of Buddha's 
far-seeing comprehension of both religious and psy- 
chological problems. To be sure, he had not the same 
scientific material at his disposal that we have to-day, 
but the fundamental problems in philosophy, psychol- 
ogy, and religion, are much simpler than our philoso- 
phers would make us believe. Buddha saw in great 
outlines the solution of the religious problem, and 
while he rejected the Brahmanical solution so similar 
to that held by dogmatic Christians of to-day, while 
he denied the divine inspiration of the Vedas and the 
authority of Brahmanical priests and sages, he did not 
rest satisfied with mere negations. His denial of the 
existence of the atman was only the negative side of 
his world-conception. He pronounced boldly a reli- 
gion which stood in contradiction to all that which by 
Brahmans was considered as most essential to reli- 
gion. In a word, he pronounced a religion based upon 
facts which should replace a religion based upon the 
assumptions of belief. ^ 

It is true that "ages lie between Buddha and 
Goethe," but the more remarkable is their agreement. 
What Mr. Wakeman says concerning Asiatics in gen- 
eral is certainly untrue of Buddha, that there is "no 
humanity beyond their race, tribal creed, or caste in- 
tegrations." There is no better ally in the world 
against "the old dr}' rot of occultism" than Buddha 
and genuine Buddhism. 

Buddha's religion appears to me valuable for three 

1. His religion is the religion of enlightenment, 
which is but another word for Religion of Science. 
His principle of acquiring truth is to rely upon the 
truth and upon the best methods man can find of in- 
vestigating the truth. In his dying hour he urged his 
disciples to rely upon their efforts in finding the truth, 
not upon the Vedas, not upon the authority of others, 
not even upon Buddha himself, and he added : "Hold 
fast to the truth as a lamp." 

2. Buddha anticipated even in important details 
the results of a scientific world-conception. Nor did 
he shun the unpopularity to which his message to the 
world was exposed, because liable to be misrepre- 
sented as a "psychology without a soul." 

3. While he was bold and outspoken in his nega- 
tion, he proclaimed, at the same time, the positive 
consequences of his philosophy. The negation of the 
atman-soul shows the vanity of man's hankering after 
enjoyment, be it in this world or in a heaven beyond, 
and Buddha taught that by cutting off the yearning for 
a heaven in any form, be it on earth or beyond the 
clouds, man will annihilate those conditions which pro- 
duce the hell of life. When the idea of an indepen- 
dent self is done away with ; when we understand that 
man's character is the form of his being as shaped by, 
and finding expression in, deeds ; finally, when we learn 
that according to our deeds this form continues in the 
further development of soul, bearing fruit according to 
the nature of our deeds, the irrationality of all hatred, 
envy, and malevolence appears, and room is left only 
for the aspirations of an unbounded and helpful sym- 
pathy with all evolution of life. 

It has always been the desire of The Open Court 
"to sweep out to sea the fog of irrational, unhealthy 
vagaries," be they Asiatic, European, or American; 
but for that very reason we welcome the alliance of 
the greatest Asiatic thinker. We do not mean to sink 
the Religion of Science into Buddhism, but on the 
contrary, understanding that Buddhism in its noblest 
conceptions is in strong agreement with the principles 
of the Religion of Science, we set forth Buddhistic 
doctrines because they anticipated some of those im- 
portant truths which we are in need of emphasising 
to-day in the face of the dogmatic assertions of tradi- 
tional religion. p. c. 


The kingdom of Siara, one of the small Asiatic States of the 
Malay Peninsula, as weak as Venezuela, if not weaker, and as 
helpless as a child if attacked by European powers, has suffered 
of late great curtailment. It loses on its western frontier a 
stretch of valuable land to England, while almost half of its east- 
ern territory has been ceded to France. The arrangement was 
agreed upon amicably and peaceably by France and England. 
Siam's compensation for the lost territory consisted in a promise 
that she should keep the remainder of the kingdom. 

1 We intend to bring out in another article this contrast between Brah- 
manism, as the religion of belief in assumptions, and Buddhism, the religion 
of facts which rejects all assumptions. 

The death of Octavius Brooks Frothingham is a great loss to 
the cause of progress in the domain of religion. Having been ex- 
cluded by the Unitarians in 1863 he founded an independent so- 
ciety and was identified with the free religious movement as a 
speaker and author. Rationalism was the ideal for which he as- 
pired. The last article that he wrote was a contribution to the 
Free Church Record, where it appeared under the title of "The 
Next Step." He says : 

" The sectarian is concerned for his party only ; to spread it 
and make it prevail, to define and establish its creed ; to beautify 
its tabernacle, or increase its influence. This requires no love of 
truth, no appreciation of doctrine, no wide view of belief, no ac- 
tive faith, DO confidence in ideas. . . . The rationalist is a lover of 
truth, the whole truth ; not the partial truth of Buddhism, Mo- 
hammedanism, Judaism, Christianity, but the truth-plight of crea- 
tion. . . . For my part I am deeply persuaded that a reverent ex- 
amination into the world of mind will result in a fresh influx of 
light and power that will make life rest in faith." 





Two crafts went out across the bar 
From land-locked bay to ocean brine, 

Both steering for one port afar, — 

One craft my friend's, and one was mine. 

The sun-breeze smiled, the night-wind laughed ; 

The white-flecked sky, the foam-decked sea 
Beckoned and welcomed sail and craft, 

Beckoned and welcomed friend and me. 

So side by side we sailed and sailed. 

Fair wind behind, fair port before. 
Till port forgot and wind that failed 

Left both adrift twixt shore and shore. 

A sea that steamed, a sky that scowled, 

A sullen silence calm as death. 
Then o'er the changing ocean howled 

Full in our face the wild wind's breath. 

Then brave I held the tiller straight, 

I fronted storm and foam of sea ; 
I called, O friend, we'll wait, we'll wait. 

The port will come to you and me. 

But far across the wid'ning way 

Between the craft of friend and mine 

I heard his cheery trumpet say. 
And saw his starry pennon shine. 

His helm he held not straight as I, 

Not towards the port his course was cast ; 

Coward ! I cried, to fail and fly. 

Nor seek the port, nor face the blast. 

Next morn, for mornings come howe'er 
The dark may brood or gales may blow. 

Far towards the port I saw appear 
The craft of him who left me so. 

What devil's work, I sneered, is this 
That thus requites my steadfast grip. 

That he should gain what I must miss. 
That his should be the nobler ship ? 

But now upon the stagnant sea, — 

Despite the helm that never swerved, — 

Clear comes the clarion call to me : 
I took the tempest when it served. 

Blow north or south, blow east or west, — 
No matter how God's winds may blow, — 

The port comes not to them who rest ; 
They find the port who bravely go. 

N. B.— By special arrangements with tlie Cosmopolitan Publisliing 
Company we are enabled to offer a full year's subscription to the two 
magazines, THE COSMOPOLITAN and THE OPEN COURT, at the un- 
usually low price of $1.75. This advantageous offer holds good for all 
new subscriptions and for renewals, until retracted. — The Open Court 
Publishing Company. 


The Primary Factors of 
Organic Evolution 

By E. D. cope, ph. D. 

Member of the U. S. National Academy of Sciences; Professor of Zoology 

and Comparative Anatomy in the University of Pennsylvania. 

Illustrations, 121; Pages, 550; Tables, Bibliography, and Index. 
Cloth, net $2.00. 

"The research depicted in this book has proceeded on the assumption 
that every variation in the characteristics of organic beings, however slight, 
lias a direct eflicient cause. This assumption is sustained by all rational and 
philosophical considerations. Any theory of evolution which omits the ex- 
planation of the causes of variations is faulty at the basis. Hence the theory 
of selection cannot answer the question which we seek to solve, although it 
embraces an important factor in the production of the general result of evo- 
lution." (Author's Preface.) 




A Critical and Historical Exposition of Its Principles. By 
Prof. Ernst Mach. Translated from the Second German Edi- 
tion by Thomas J. McCormack. 250 Cuts. 534 Pages. Half 
Morocco, Gilt Top. Price, $2.50. 


By Prof. Ernst Mach. Translated by the same. Cloth, Gilt 
Top. Exhaustively Indexed. Pages, 313. Price, $1.00. 





CHICAGO, ILLINOIS, Post Office Drawer F. 

E. C. HEGELER, Publisher, 







ROENTGEN'S RAYS AGAIN. Thomas J. McCormack. 4843 

Editor 4844 

NOTES 4845 


Make the Tempest Serve. Viroe ' 4846 



y. V. 

rx o 

5 '5 


The Open Court. 



No. 447. (Vol. X.— 12.) 

CHICAGO, MARCH 19, 1896. 

i One Dollar per Year. 
I Single Copies, 5 Cents. 

Copyright by The Open Court Publishing Co.— Reprints are permitted only on condition of giving full credit to author and publisher. 


A Study of Indian IVlonism. 


'* As the web-wombed spider puts forth 
and draws to him, as trees come forth upon 
the earth, as from a living man his locks 
and tresses, — so from the unchanging eter- 
nal comes forth all the world." 

— Mundaka Upanishad. 

The teaching of the Upanishads is this : the real 
self of each being and of all beings is the supreme 
eternal ; this self, though unchanging, falls into dream; 
it dreams itself first into many separate hostile selves ; 
then it dreams for their enjoyment the manifold sensu- 
ous life of the three worlds ; then, that the hostile 
selves may not fall into perpetual fascination and en- 
thralment, the self dreams the last and sanative dream 
of death ; and through the power of that last dream 
the wandered selves find no lasting joy in their sensu- 
ous ways, for they see that all this fades and wastes 
and wanes ; that there is no unchanging joy outside 
the self, the self re-become one and awaking from all 
dreams to the reality of its immemorial oneness. 

Thus awakened from the dream of life, they see 
the steps through which they fell to dreaming the 
dream of the world ; they see that, as the rivers come 
from the ocean and return again to the ocean, as kin- 
dred sparkles come forth from a well-lit fire, so this 
dream of the world, this world of dream, came forth 
from the self, from the eternal that the seers plainly 
see as the womb of the worlds. 

These teachings of the Upanishads are high in- 
spirations and intuitions, from the golden dawn of 
India's life, — if indeed their essence and doctrines be 
not older even than India. To these high intuitions we 
cannot rise at once, though they awaken strong echoes 
in our hearts ; for, since those sunny days, the self's 
great dream has grown heavier and darker, so that we 
can no longer hold clear truth directly by strong in- 
tuition, but must fortify intuition by intellect ; must 
support the verdict of our souls by the reasonings of 
our philosophies. 

Thus, it came that, in the latest period of India's 
life, the clear intuitions and shining wisdom of the 

Upanishads were expressed anew, in the philosophy 
of the Vedanta, whose lucid thought and admirable 
statement can compare with the highest work of the 
human mind in any age, and only gain by the com- 

When one speaks of the Vedanta, one means, for 
the most part, the greatest man of the Vedanta school, 
the Teacher Shankara, who holds in India the su- 
premacy that Plato holds in Greece, or Kant in the 
philosophy of to-day. Though his life was very brief, 
Shankara did all that could have been done to restore 
for later ages the pure wisdom of India's dawn ; the 
Upanishads themselves he commented on and inter- 
preted, writing much also of the poem which best re- 
flects their spirit, the Bhagavad Gita, — " the Master's 
Songs." In his day, the learning of the school of the 
Vedantins was enshrined in a book full of enigmas and 
obscurities, quite meaningless in parts, without an 
added explanation ; this obscure book of memorial 
verses, the Brahma Sutras of Badarayana, Shankara 
took as the theme of his most extensive, and, doubt- 
less, his greatest work, and did all that lucidity, in- 
tense concentration of thought, and fluent language 
could do, to make its dark places light, its rough ways 
smooth. Besides all this, and many practical labors 
of reformation and teaching that accompanied it, Shan- 
kara found time to write a whole series of lesser works, 
in verse and prose, full of that wisdom of old, the 
love of which was the single passion of his passion- 
less life. 

From one of these lesser treatises, the "Awakening 
to Reality," — Tattva Bodha, — we shall take so much 
as is needed to make quite clear, in the language of 
philosophy, what is meant by the great Indian teach- 
ing of oneness, the doctrine of the one self in all selves, 
the unity of the self and the eternal. 

After certain sentences of introduction and bene- 
diction, and an enumeration of the powers of mind 
and heart required for the gaining of wisdom, Shan- 
kara harks back to the title of his book, and asks, — for 
most of the work is in the form of question and an- 
swer, — "What is the discerning of reality ? It is this," 
he answers : "That the self is real; that all things 
other than self are delusive." Then, with that intent- 
ness of logical thought which gives Shankara such a 



charm, this is at once followed by another question 
and a definition : "What is the self? He who stands 
apart from the physical, emotional, and causal ves- 
tures; who is beyond the five veils; who is witness 
of the three modes ; whose own nature is being, con- 
sciousness, bliss, — this is the self." 

Not a word in all this, whose meaning is not nicely 
and carefully defined, whose exact value in thought is 
not precisely ascertained. And as this sentence con- 
tains all that the self is not, as well as all that the self 
is, — in a word, all things whatsoever that exist, — by 
gaining a full insight into this one sentence we shall 
have mastered the whole world-teaching of the Ve- 
dantins, and, above all, their supreme teaching of the 
One, above every change and seeming separation. 

Beginning with what the self is not, in the indi- 
vidual, and with the assertion already made, that the 
physical vesture is not the self, Shankara asks : "What 
is this physical vesture ? " And replies in a formula 
full of concentrated meaning, in which the wisdom of 
many ages, of many philosophers, is worn down to 
the fewest possible words : " Formed of the five ele- 
ments fivefolded, born through works, it is the dwell- 
ing where opposing forces like pleasure and pain are 
experienced ; it has these six accidents : it becomes, 
it comes to birth, it grows, it changes, it declines, it 
perishes ; this is the physical vesture." 

We may ask here, as Shankara does in a later 
part of his book, — when he has left the individual to 
speak of the building of worlds, — what are the five 
elements of which the fivefolded nature of the physi- 
cal body is formed? We must preface the answer by 
saying that, from the very beginning, Indian philos- 
ophy had become entirely penetrated with the thought 
that we can know nothing except our own states of 
consciousness ; that anything outside our states of 
consciousness can only be, as Professor Huxley once 
said, matter for more or less probable hypothesis. 
With this belief and knowledge, the best Indian phi- 
losophy never speaks of matter and force as things- 
in-themselves, as independent realities, as anything 
but more or less probable hypotheses ; the phenom- 
ena which we should call the phenomena of matter 
and force they always expressed as far as possible in 
terms of our states of consciousness, and not as inde- 
pendent realities. 

Looking in this way at the phenomena of the 
physical world, — the field in which the physical ves- 
ture is manifested, — they found that the states of con- 
sciousness from which we infer the existence of the 
physical world have five leading characteristics or 
qualities, or shades of color ; in other words, the states 
of consciousness, which not only represent, but also 
are, the physical world, are five ; these five are what 
we call the five senses, and what Indian philosophy 

calls the five perceptive, or knowing, powers : hear- 
ing, touching, seeing, tasting, smelling. 

In order to reach clearness of thought, to give ex- 
pression to that tendency of our consciousness which 
sets subject and object up against each other, in com- 
plement to each other, they further divided each of 
these types of physical consciousness into a trinity of 
subject, predicate, and object; as, seer, seeing, seen ; 
hearer, hearing, heard ; knower, knowing, known. 
Then, seeking for an expression by which the last 
term in each of these trinities might be expressed by 
itself, and spoken of as having, for the sake of hypoth- 
esis, an independent existence, they developed the 
terminology of the five elements, ether, or rather the 
"forward shining " or "radiant " power, as the out- 
ward complement of hearing ; wind, breath, or air, as 
the complement of touch, or, rather, extension ; fire 
or light or radiance, as the complement of seeing ; the 
waters, as the complement of tasting, because taste 
can only apprehend fluids; and, lastly, earth, as the 
complement of smell. 

But as each of these hypothetical elements of sen- 
sation contains within it the possibilities of other sen- 
sations than the dominant one, — camphor, for exam- 
ple, being seen and touched and tasted, as well as 
smelt, — they were led to say that these elements, 
these types of physical consciousness, were not simple 
but compound, each having in it, besides its dominant 
character, a possibility of each of the other four ; the 
dominant character and the four other subsidiary char- 
acters make the "fivefolded" nature of the elements 
spoken of by Shankara. Thus, the physical vesture 
or body is "formed of the five elements, fivefolded." 

It is "born through works," or, as we should say, 
it is subject to the law of causality; which, for the 
physical body, largely takes the form of heredity. 
Then again, the physical vesture is subject to the six 
accidents of generation and birth, growth and change, 
decline and death. This needs no comment. In each 
of these characteristics there is also implied a sentence 
of discrimination: "Therefore this is not the self. " 
The physical vesture is subject to causality; the self 
is not subject to causality; therefore the physical body 
is not the self. The physical vesture is subject to 
change ; the self, the pure idea of " I am, ' ' is not sub- 
ject to change ; therefore the physical vesture is not 
the self, and so on, with the other characters. 

This doctrine of the five elements is, therefore, not 
merely defective physics, hut far rather a metaphysi- 
cal attempt to render the phenomena of physical con- 
sciousness, the physical world, into terms of our states 
of consciousness, in a simple and methodical way. 

So far the physical vesture, the first of the series 
of things which the self is not, defined in order to 
show what the self is. The self is, further, other than 



the subtle — or psychic or emotional — vesture. This 
vesture, again, corresponds to a primary fact in our 
states of consciousness. We quite clearly recognise 
one set of facts in our states of consciousness as being 
outward, physical, objective; we not less clearly rec- 
ognise another set of facts in our states of conscious- 
ness as being inward, mental or psychic, subjective. 
Both sets of facts, both series of pictures and feelings, 
are outward from consciousness, other than conscious- 
ness, objects of consciousness ; therefore both are not- 
self. But the clear difference between them must 
be marked ; therefore, the outward, objective series 
are spoken of as the physical vesture, while the in- 
ward, subjective series belong to the psychical or 
emotional vesture. Looked at closely, the real differ- 
ence between these two is, that physical things are 
constrained and conditioned by both space and time; 
while psychic, mental things, though subject to time, 
are free from the rigid frame and outline of space. 
Both are, of course, subject to causality. 

In the psychical, as in the physical states of con- 
sciousness, there are the " five knowing powers "; and 
we also speak of "the mind's eye," "mental touch," 
and so on. Indeed, according to Shankara's philos- 
ophy, hearing, seeing, touching, and the rest are 
purely psychical powers, even when manifested through 
physical organs, as "the eye cannot see of itself, nor 
the ear hear of itself." 

As the physical vesture is the complex or nexus of 
the physical states of consciousness, so the psychical 
vesture is the complex or nexus of the psychical or 
mental powers and states of consciousness ; these are 
free from the tyranny of space, though subject to cau- 
sality and time. 

The mention of Kant's famous triad, space, time, 
and causality, brings us to the third vesture, of which 
Shankara writes thus : "What is the causal vesture? 
Formed through ineffable, beginningless unwisdom, it 
is the substance and cause of the other two vestures ; 
though unknowing as to its own nature, it is yet in 
nature unerring ; this is the causal vesture." With- 
out comment, this is hardly intelligible. The idea in 
it is this : Our states of consciousness, the pictures 
and feelings and sensations which are objective to our 
consciousness in unbroken series, are expanded, the 
one part in space and time, the other part in time 
only. Both are subject to causality. That is, the 
series of pictures, of feelings, of sensations are pre- 
sented to our consciousness in a defined order, and we 
interpret this order as implying a causal connexion ; 
we consider the first of two states of consciousness in 
a series as being the cause of the second ; the second 
as being the effect of the first. This attribution of 
causality, the division of our states of consciousness 
into cause, causing, and caused is a separation in a 

double sense. In the first place, it divides the single 
substance of existence threefold, into cause, copula, 
and effect ; and, in the second place, it separates the 
single substance of existence from consciousness, by 
establishing the idea of knower and known, of ob- 
server and observed, and thus sets up a duality. Now 
it is axiomatic with the Vedanta philosophy, for rea- 
sons which we shall presently see, that this duality 
does not really exist ; that the substance of being, the 
self, is not thus divided into knower and known, ob- 
server and observed. 

Therefore it is said that this causal vesture or com- 
plex of the idea of causality is formed of unwisdom, 
the unwisdom which sets up a division in the undi- 
vided One. Now the idea of causality goes deeper 
than either space or time. It goes deeper than the 
idea of time, because time, properly considered is a 
product of causality. Causality divides the objective 
into causal series. The elements of these series must 
appear before consciousness in order, in succession, 
for this succession of effect to cause is the essence of 
causality. Now it is this very succession in the series 
of objects, images, sensations which is the parent of 
the idea of time ; for consciousness of itself has no 
idea of time. If consciousness had a sense of the pas- 
sage of time, then the sense of time, in different states 
of consciousness, would be equal ; but in waking and 
dream, in dream and trance, the sense of time is en- 
tirely different. Therefore the sense of time is de- 
rived, not original in the self ; it has its rise in the suc- 
cession of images which is the effect of causality. 

Space is a further derivation of the same idea, 
arising from the presence of more than one causal 
series — or series of images, conditioned by causality 
— being present to consciousness at the same time ; 
thus giving a breadth or sideways extension to per- 
ception ; and this breadth of extension is the sense or 
the idea of space. 

Thus the ideas of time and space are not original 
and independent but derivative from the idea of cau- 
sality; hence the causal vesture, or complex of the 
idea of causality, is said to be the cause and substance 
of the other two vestures, the psychical — or vesture 
of causality and time — and the physical, — or vesture 
of causality, time, and space. We saw already that 
the causal vesture is formed of unwisdom, because 
the causal idea, the distribution of the one substance 
of being into causal series, is not inherent, or a prop- 
erty of the thing-in-itself, but merely the result of our 
mode of perception, "a. result of intellect, which sup- 
plies the idea of causation " as Shankara says, thus 
anticipating almost the very words of Kant. 

Born of unwisdom, this idea of causality is neces- 
sarily beginningless, or outside of time. Because, as 
causality is the parent of time, it naturally follows that 



it cannot be expressed in terms of time, or be said to 
have a beginning in time. As, again, this causal idea 
goes to the very root of intellect, it cannot be expressed 
in terms of intellect ; so it is said to be ineffable, or 
"not to be spoken of" in the language of intellectual 

This causal idea seems to have its root in the 
seeming necessity of the one substance of being, the 
eternal, to reveal itself to itself gradually, in a succes- 
sive series of revelations. This gradual series of rev- 
elations of the eternal to the eternal is the cause of 
manifested existence, or, to speak more strictly, is 
manifested existence. Now this gradual series of 
revelations implies a gradually increasing knowledge 
which shall stop short only at omniscience, when the 
whole of the eternal is revealed to the whole of the 
eternal. And each step in this gradual revelation is 
perfect in itself, and a perfecting and supplementing 
of all the revelations that have gone before. Hence 
each is "in its own nature unerring. " But we saw 
that the revelation of each part of the eternal is in 
three degrees : first, as conditioned by space, time, 
and causality, in the physical world ; then, as condi- 
tioned by time and causality, in the psychical or men- 
tal world ; and, lastly, as conditioned by causality 
only, in the causal or moral world. Therefore the 
revelation in the moral world is freer from conditions 
than the other two, free from the errors of time and 
space, and thus " unerring wisdom " as compared with 
these. But before the whole of the eternal can be re- 
vealed to the whole of the eternal, the causal idea 
must disappear, must cease to separate the eternal 
into causal series ; so that the causal idea is an ele- 
ment of error, of illusion, and therefore "unknowing 
as to its own nature." This plenary revelation of the 
whole eternal to the whole eternal is "the own-being 
of the supreme self "; therefore the self is above the 
causal vesture, the causal vesture is not the self. 

To change for a moment from the language of phi- 
losophy to that of common life, the teaching is this: 
The individual is the Eternal ; man is God ; nature is 
Divinity. But the identity of the individual with the 
eternal, the oneness of man with God, is veiled and 
hidden, first by the physical body, secondly by the 
personality, and, lastly by the necessity of continuity 
which makes one physical body succeed another, one 
personality develop into another, in the chain of re- 
births which continuity and the conservation of — men- 
tal and moral, as well as physical — energy inevitably 
bring forth. 

Now, freedom from this circle of necessity will 
only be reached when we have succeeded first in see- 
ing that the physical body is not our true self, but 
outward from and objective to our true self; then that 
the psychic body — the complex of mental states — is 

likewise not our true self; and, lastly, that our causal 
vesture — as containing within it the suggestion of our 
separate individuality opposed to other separate indi- 
vidualities, and thus different from the plenitude of 
the eternal which includes all individualities — is not 
our most real self ; for our most real self is that very 
eternal, the "Theos which is all things in all things," 
as another teacher says. This is the awakening from 
the dream of the hostile selves, which, as we saw at 
the outset, the self falls into, and from which it will 
awake into a knowledge of its own fulness as the 

The self, Shankara further said, "is other than 
the five veils." These five veils — physical, vital, 
emotional, intellectual, spiritual — are a development 
of the idea of the three vestures. The physical veil 
is the physical vesture, regarded as a form rather than 
as matter; as formal rather than material, in harmony 
with the conception of Faraday, that the atoms of 
matter are really pure centres of force; the seeming 
substantiality of matter belonging not to the atoms at 
all, but to the web or network of forces which are cen- 
tred in the atoms. The idea of a "web " of forces is 
exactly that of the Vedanta, which constantly speaks 
of the world as "woven" by the Eternal, as a spider 
weaves his "web." 

The next three veils — vital, emotional, intellec- 
tual — are subdivisions of the mental or psychical ves- 
ture. A precise determination of their values would 
lead us too far into the mental psychologj' of India to 
be practicable at present. The spiritual veil, again, 
is the causal vesture, of which we have said much 

Again, the "three modes" of which the self is 
"witness," are what are called in the Vedanta : wak- 
ing, dreaming, and dreamlessness. They are the fields 
of the activities of the three vestures ; waking, the 
field of the physical vesture ; dreaming, the field of 
the psychical or mental vesture, — whether in day- 
dreams or the dreams of night ; and dreamlessness, 
the field of the moral or causal vesture, whether in 
waking inspiration, dreaming vision, or dreamless 
trance. Here, again, to develop the subject fully 
would lead us too far afield. 

Freedom, the conscious oneness with the most real 
self, which is the eternal, consists in setting aside 
these vestures, in stripping off these veils. How this 
is to be done, we can best shovv^ by repeating the 
words of Shankara: "Just as there is the firm belief 
that 'I am the body,' 'I am a man,' 'I am a priest,' 
'I am a servant,' so he who possesses the firm con- 
viction that ' I am neither priest, nor serf, nor man, 
but stainless being, consciousness, bliss, the shining, 
the inner master, shining wisdom,' and realises this in 
direct perception, he, verily, is free, even in life." 




About two thousand five hundred years ago the 
Indian mind was engaged with the problem "What 
am I ? " and the documents which still reveal to us the 
lines of argument and the chief results of these inves- 
tigations are called the Upanishads. The Brahman 
thinker considering all the various ingredients of his 
make-up comes to the conclusion that none of them 
constitutes his Self, and now, instead of arguing that 
his Self is the organised totality of all his parts, he 
comes to the conclusion that Self is a separate being 
in itself. 

The Self or Atman was regarded as that something 
which says, "I am," and remains the same in all 
changes. It is called the Unconditioned, the Abso- 
lute, the Eternal, the Immortal. 

What is this Self ? Is it our body? No ! Our body 
is subject to change ; it is born, grows, then it decays, 
and, at last, it will die. The body is not the Self. 

Is our mind the Self ? The same answer ! Our 
mind is not unconditioned ; our mental activity is sub- 
ject to change. Therefore, our mind is not the Self. 

Perhaps our emotions are the Self? But how can 
they be the Self, for they come and go and are as vari- 
able as the body and the mind. 

Body, mind, and the emotional soul (so the Brah- 
mans say) are the vestures only of the Self ; they are 
the husks or sheaths which envelope and hide it. The 
Self gives reality to, and is in possession of, body, 
mind, and soul. The Self is the mysterious "ukasa, " 
or quintessence of being, without which reality would 
not exist. We read : 

"This immutable one is the unseen seer, the unheard hearer, 
the unthought thinker, the unknown knower.''^ 

We read in the Chadogya Upanishad : 

" The body is mortal and always held by death. It is the 
abode of that Self which is immortal and without body." [Sacred 
Books of the East, Vol. I., pp. 140-141.) 

The Self is supposed to be the "person " (purusha 
= person or soul) who is the agent in all the organs. 
The Self is the seer in the eye, the smeller in the nose, 
the thinker of the thoughts. Thus Prajapati, the Lord 
of Creation, instructs Indra on the nature of the Self : 

" Now where the sight has entered into the void (the pupil of 
the eye), there is the person of the eye, the eye itself is the instru- 
ment of seeing. He who knows, let me smell this, he is the Self, 
the nose is the instrument of smelling. He who knows, let me 
say this, he is the Self, the tongue is the instrument of saying. 
He who knows, let me hear this, he is the self, the ear is the in- 
strument of hearing. 

" He who knows, let me think this, he is the self, the mind is 
his divine eye. He, the Self, seeing these pleasures (which to 
others are hidden like a buried treasure of gold) through his di- 
vine eye, i. e , the mind, rejoices. 

"The Devas who are in the world of Brahman meditate on 

IDvivedi, The Imitation of S'ankara, p. 15. 

that Self (as taught by Prajapati to Indra, and by Indra to the 
Devas). Therefore all worlds belong to them, and all desires. 
He who knows that Self and understands it, obtains all worlds and 
ail desires. Thus said PrajSpati, yea, thus said Prajapati." {Sa- 
cred Books of the East, Vol. I., p. 142.) 

Here the Self is defined as the consciousness of 
the ego-idea. The Self is said to be "he who knows, 
' Let me smell, hear, think, or do this.' " The notion 
of Self is founded upon the fact that there is some- 
thing in us which says " I am," and the question rises 
whether or not we are justified in regarding the con- 
sciousness as the Self, and the Self as an independent 

What is the reality that corresponds to the pro- 
noun "I "? 

The word "I" is a central and therefore very im- 
portant idea among many other ideas which constitute 
man's soul. The brain-structure in which this little 
word "I " resides is situated, together with all speech, 
in the island of Rolando, on the left hemisphere of the 
brain; and if it is conscious, we speak of this condi- 
tion as ego-consciousness or self-consciousness. Its 
great prominence among other ideas is due to its signi- 
ficance which comprises nothing more nor less than the 
whole personality of the speaker. It may now mean 
the speaker's sentiments, now his body, now one of his 
limbs, now his thoughts, now his past history, now the 
potentialities of his future. 

Considered by itself without the contents of its 
meaning, the pronoun " I " (frequently called the 
" ego " by philosophers) is as empty as a hollow water 
bubble ; if devoid of the realities which it comprises 
in its meaning, it is a mere abstract; it is a cipher by 
v/hich the speaker denotes himself. If regarded as a 
thing in itself, the word is without sense ; it is like a 
circle without centre and periphery ; like a cart with- 
out wheels, box, and beam ; like a tree without roots, 
stem, and branches. To reify or hypostatise it as a 
being in itself is a logical fallacy ; and to build upon 
this fallacy a metaphysical system is a grave error 
which naturally leads to the most fantastical illusions. 
We might as well hypostatise any and all other words 
or abstractions and regard them as real entities and 
things in themselves. In this way mythology has peo- 
pled our imagination with all kinds of chimeras, fair- 
ies, ogres, gods, and devils. 

* ' * 

It is interesting to know the arguments by which 
the unity of animated life which manifests itself in 
consciousness was identified with prana which means 
breath, vital principle or the conscious animation of 
the body. Prajapati explains that that is the true 
Self which when leaving the body renders the body 
most wretched. And this is to be honored like " Uk- 
tha," the divine hymn, the embodiment of divine rev- 
elation. Thus all the constituents of man, conceived 



as Devas, made the experiment. We read in the Aita- 
reya Aranyaka : 

" 'Well.' they said, 'let us all go out from this body ; then 
on whose departure this body shall fall, he shall be the uktha 
among us.' 

" Speech went out, yet the body without speaking remained, 
eating and drinking. 

"Sight went out, yet the body without seeing remained, eat- 
ing and drinking. 

" Hearing went out, yet the body without hearing remained, 
eating and drinking. 

" Mind went out, yet the body, as if blinking, remained, eat- 
ing and drinking. 

" Breath went out, then when breath was gone out, the body 
fell. . . . 

"They strove again, saying: 'I am the uktha, I am the 
uktha.' 'Well,' they said, ' let us enter that body again ; then on 
whose entrance this body shall rise again, he shall be the uktha 
among us.' 

"Speech entered, but the body lay still. Sight entered, but 
the body lay still. Hearing entered, but the body lay still. Mind 
entered, but the body lay still. Breath entered, and when breath 
had entered, the body rose, and it became the uktha. 

" Therefore breath alone is the uktha. 

" Let people know that breath is the uktha indeed. 

" The Devas (the other senses) said to breath : ' Thou art the 
uktha, thou art all this, we are thine, thou art ours.' " (Sacred 
Books of the East, Vol. I., pp. 206-207.) 

We can trace in the Upanishads the logical argu- 
ments on which the Indian mind arrived at the idea 
of an independent Self, as the breath or spirit of man 
which at the moment of death was supposed to leave 
the body and to continue in an independent existence 
as an immortal being. Breath became identified with 
consciousness and was supposed to be the Self and 
is called Sattya, i. e., the true (p. 209). It is the 
mover of movements and the agent of actions. It is 
that by which we obtain strength, and its recognition 
is the object of all knowledge. In Shankara's philos- 
ophy the Self plays the part of Kant's thing in itself. 
The Self is described to us in the Talavakara-Upan- 
ishad {Sacred Books of the East, I., p. 147): 

" It is the ear of the ear, the mind of the mind, the speech of 
speech, the breath of breath, and the eye of the eye. When freed 
(from the senses) the wise, on departing from this world, become 

And it is by recognising the Self that " the wise 
become immortal when they have departed from this 
world " {ib., p. 149). 

The Self was identified with God, the Creator. 
Brahman was said to be the Self ; and "in the begin- 
ning there was only Self. He was alone; and there 
was nothing else whatsoever. " (Aitareya- Aranyaka, 
Vol. I., p. I.) Having created worlds and the various 
deities, Agni (fire), Vayu (air), Aditya (sun), the Dis 
(regions), Kandramas (moon), and the rest, the Self 
created man, and all the gods entered into man to en- 
soul him. They endowed him with breath, sight, 
touch, speech, digestion, and other functions. 

We read in the Aitareya Aranyaka : 1 

' 'And then the Self thought : ' If speech names, if scent smells, 
if the eye sees, if the ear hears, if the skin feels, if the mind thinks, 
if the off-breathing digests, if the organ discharges, then what 
am I ?' 

"Then opening the suture of the skull, he got in by that 

"That door is called the Vidriti (tearing asunder), the NSn- 
dana (the place of bliss). 

' ' There are three dwelling-places for him, three dreams ; this 
dwelling-place (the eye), this dwelling-place (the throat), this 
dwelling-place (the heart). 

"When born (when the Highest Self had entered the body) 
he looked through all things, in order to see whether anything 
wished to proclaim here another (Self). He saw this person only 
(himself) as the widely spread Brahman. ' I saw it,' thus he said ; 

"Therefore he was (named) 'Idam-dra' (seeing this). 

"Being Idamdra by name, they call him Indra mysteriously. 
For the Devas love mystery, yea, they love mystery." 

Of such importance did the Hindu thinkers regard 
the conception of Self, which as an independent spir- 
itual being was compared to ''a bank or boundary, so 
that these worlds may not be confounded," that they 
made the belief in its existence an article of faith. 
Knowledge of the Self was supposed to be a divine 
revelation which would not have obtained except by 
the supernatural assistance of the gods, of Prajapati, 
of Brahma, of the Lord. The Self is mysterious in its 
nature. It cannot be discovered either by sense- 
experience or by scientific investigation ; for : 

" The eye has no access there, nor has speech nor mind ; we 
do not know the Self, nor the method whereby we can impart It. 
It is other than the known as well as the unknown ; so indeed do 
we hear from the sages of old who explained It thus to us. "^ 

The existence of Self must be believed. We read 
in the Ch'andogya Upanishad, {Sacred Books of the 
East, I., page 122) : 

" When one believes, then one perceives. One who does not 
believe, does not perceive. Only he who believes, perceives." 

On the belief in the existence of the Self man's 
eternal salvation was supposed to depend. We read 
{Sacred Books of the East, Vol. I., p. 124): 

" To him who sees, perceives, and understands this, the spirit 
(praKa) springs from the Self, hope springs from the Self, memory 
springs from the Self ; so do ether, fire, water, appearance, and 
disappearance, food, power, understanding, reflexion, considera- 
tion, will, mind, speech, names, sacred hymns, and sacrifices — 
aye, all this springs from the Self. 

" There is this verse, ' He who sees this, does not see death, 
nor illness, nor pain ; he who sees this, sees everything, and ob- 
tains everything everywhere.' 

"He who sees, perceives, and understands this, loves the 
Self, delights in the Self, revels in the Self, rejoices in the Self — 
he becomes a SvarSj (an autocrat or self-ruler); he is lord and 
master in all the worlds." 

There are various complicated systems elaborated 
from the metaphysics of the conception of the Self. 

\ Sacred Books of the East, Vol. I., p. 242. 
2Dvivedi, /. /.,p.6. 



Most of the Indian philosophers identify the Self with 
Brahma, so that there is really only one Self which 
manifests itself in many various Selves ; and since the 
Self alone is real, the material universe is conceived 
as mere appearance, as sham, as an illusion of the 
senses. This is the doctrine of the Vedanta School, 
the greatest representative of which is Shankara, a 
thinker of unusual power and of great influence. 

The Vedanta philosophy is called advaita, or the 
non-duality doctrine, as opposed to the dualism of the 
Samkhya School, whose founder taught that there 
are innumerable Selves uncreated and indestructible, 
among whom many by the error of not distinguishing 
between Self and Body got entangled into this ma- 
terial world of suffering, from which they can be ran- 
somed only by the recognition of the true nature of 
the Self. 

Whatever view we may take, one thing is certain, 
that the assumption of an independent and separate 
Self, involves us in contradictions and vagaries wher- 
ever we turn and however wisely we may attempt to 
avoid its consequences. 

* * 

In opposition to these speculations, Buddha de- 
nied the existence of an independent Self as the soul 
of man. While the Brahmans spoke of the Self in a 
dualistic sense, "as of a razor that might be fitted in 
a razor-case," or " as a fire that might be lit in a fire- 
place," Buddha propounded a consistent Monism in 
which he radically ignored all metaphysical assump- 
tions and philosophical postulates, founding his reli- 
gion on a consideration of the pure facts of experience. 
While the Brahmans declared that the Self is immor- 
tal and immutable, "that it is not increased by a good 
action, or decreased by a bad action," Buddha taught 
that there was no use in trying to improve the immut- 
able ; but he found it imperative to improve man ; and 
man's nature, according to Buddha, consists of karma, 
i. e., of actions, or, to use a term of natural science, 
of functions. Man is the product of the life and 
thought functions of former existences, and his own 
karma continues as a living factor in the generations 
to come. 

In Brahmanism facts are nothing, and idea, that is 
to say theory, is everything. In Buddhism theory is 
nothing, and facts are everything. Theory has sense 
only as a comprehensive formulation of facts. ^ 

The Self of the Brahmans is Kant's thing- in-itself 
applied to religion. It is the thing-in-itself of man's 
soul. It is the hypostatisation of the abstraction of self- 
consciousness, which is carried so far as to deify that 
feature of existence which is common to all beings 
and to regard the particular forms which they assume 

ISee Dvivedi, /. /., Introduction, p. xix. 

as unessential. From this standpoint all differences 
disappear, and, as the Bhagavadgita declares, "a 
Brahman full of learning and virtue, a cow, an ele- 
phant, a dog, and one of low caste," all are on the 
same level. Shankara, speaking of "the nightmare of 
separateness, says : 

" He who has the firm conviction 'I am this consciousness,' 
not the form it takes, let him be a Brahmana or a ChSndaia, my 
mind points to him as the real Master."' 

Buddha would on the contrary insist that the form 
in which consciousness appears is the man himself ; 
that that particular form functioning in a particular 
way is that particular man ; but that consciousness in 
itself, a consciousness which has no particular form 
and is consciousness in general, is a mere fiction, an 
empty abstraction, and a thought as "hollow as a 
water-bubble," and as "hollow as a plantain-tree." 

Shankara was an adversary of Buddhism, and the 
report goes that he had instigated the people to mas- 
sacre the Buddhists without mercy. This report may 
have been untrue, but this much is certain, that Shan- 
kara was the most energetic reformer of Brahmanism 
at the time when Buddhism began to lose its hold on 
the Hindu mind. While Shankara rejected Buddha's 
philosophy, he adopted those moral truths of his doc- 
trines which had most deeply impressed the people of 
India, universal love, compassion with the suffering, 
and the solidarity of all life. And here his theory of 
the Self merges into Pantheism. He sees with the 
poet of the Bhagavadgita "all beings in Self, and Self 
in all beings." Feeling the thrill of omneity in his 
heart, Shankara says : 

" I am all bliss, the bliss all eternal consciousness. Death I 
fear not, caste I respect not, father, mother, nay even birth, I 
know not, relatives, friends I recognise not, teacher and pupil I 
own not ; — I am all bliss, the bliss all eternal consciousness. "^ 

While Shankara has become the undisputed leader 
of Hindu thought, whose sway reaches down to the 
present time, we must not omit to mention another 
less prominent school, founded by Ramanuja, which 
has worked out the doctrine of the Self in a form that 
peculiarly and closely resembles the soul-conception 
of modern Christianity. Ramanuja believes in a triad 
of existences : (i) the Highest Self, who is Para-Brah- 
man, or Ishvara, or Vishnu, the Creator and Lord ; 
(2) innumerable Selves of human beings, who possess 
separate and distinct existences ; and (3) the not-self 
of the inanimate world. Ramanuja's moral ideal for 
human Selves consists in the attainment of a union 
with the Highest Self, in which however their sepa- 
rate identities and their individual consciousnesses 
are not lost. 

1 The Imitation o/S'ankara, p. i8i. 

2 The Imitation o/S'ankara, pp. 157-158 and 156. 



The contrast between a religion based upon a be- 
lief in postulates and a religion based upon facts has 
not as yet disappeared. The dogmatic Christianity 
of the present day is a revival of the metaphysics of 
the Upanishads, and some representative Christian 
authors remind us very much of the logic and modes 
of thought of the old Brahmans. Thus Mr. Glad- 
stone, in his latest article on "The Future Life " says : 

"The power of death to destroy living beings is conditioned 
by their being compounded. For as consciousness is indivisible, 
so it should seem is the conscious being in which it resides. And, 
if this be so, it follows that, the body being extraneous and foreign 
to the true self, no presumption can arise out of the dissolution of 
the body against the continued existence of the true self. 

"As we lose limbs, organs of sense, and yet the true self 
continues ; and as animal bodies are always in a state of flux, with 
no corresponding loss or gain of the true self, we again infer the 
distinctness of that true self from the body, and its independence 
at the time of death." 

If this passage which contains the gist of Mr. Glad- 
stone's argument in favor of an immortality in another 
world of immaterial existence, appeared in one of the 
Upanishads, it could not be regarded as out of place 
there, so closely does it resemble the line of thought 
set forth by Brahman sages. But the objection that 
Buddha made against the assumption of an independ- 
ent Self holds good with the same force against Chris- 
tian metaphysics as against Brahmanical speculations. 

If modern psychology has accomplished anything 
beyond the shadow of doubt, it is this, that conscious- 
ness is not an indivisible unity, but a unification, a sys- 
tematisation or a focussing of feelings. These feelings, 
when not centralised, as in dreams or swoons, continue 
in a condition that is commonly called subconscious. 
The province of subconscious activity in a man's soul 
is very large, by far larger than the narrow circle that 
under the stress of attention appears on the surface of 

But is this not a dreary doctrine as it denies the 
existence of the Soul. Those readers of The Open 
Court who have followed us in our exposition on the 
nature of the Soul know that this doctrine is neither 
dreary, nor nihilistic, nor does it deny the existence 
of the Soul. It only denies the assumption of the ex- 
istence of a metaphysical Self, of an atman, an inde- 
pendent ego-being, and proves that the Soul is larger 
than the ego. The rescission of that artificial wall 
raised up round the conception of our Self opens the 
vistas of eternity, both in the past and the future j it 
shows the connexion in which our Soul stands with the 
whole evolution of life upon earth and impresses us 
with the importance of our deeds which will continue 
for good or evil in after-life. 

" Not from the blank Inane emerged the soul : 
A sacred treasury it is of dreams 
And deeds that built the present from the past, 

Adding thereto its own experiences. 
Ancestral lives are seeing in mine eyes, 
Their hearing listeneth within mine ears, 
And in my hand their strength is plied again. 
Speech came, a rich consignment from the past, 
Each word aglow with wondrous spirit life, 
Thus building up my soul of myriad souls. 

" I call that something ' I ' which seems my soul ; 
Yet more the spirit is than ego holds. 
For lo ! this ego, where shall it be sought ? 
I'm wont to say * I see'; yet 'tis the eye 
That sees, and seeing, kind'leth in the thought 
The beaming images of memory. 
' I bear ' we say: Hearing is of the ear ; 
And where the caught word stirs, there cords resound 
Of slumb'ring sentiment ; and echoes wake 
Of sounds that long ago to silence lapsed. 
Not dead, perfected only, is the past ; 
And ever from the darkness of the grave 
It rises to rejuvenated life. 

" The ' I ' is but a name to clothe withal 
The clustered mass that now my being forms. 
Take not the symbol for reality — • 
The transient for th' eterne. Mine ego, lo ! 
'Tis but my spirit's scintillating play 
This fluctuant moment of eternities 
That now are crossing where my heart's blood beats. 
I was not, am, and soon will pass. But never 
My soul shall cease ; the breeding ages aye 
Shall know its life. All that the past bequeathed, 
And all that life hath added unto me, 
This shall endure in immortality."^ 

'^De Rerum i^aiura, pp. 7-8. 

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SELF AND ETERNAL. Charles Johnston 4847 

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The Open Court. 



No. 448. (Vol. X.— 13.) 

CHICAGO, MARCH 26, 1896. 

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Life is the greatest thing in the world ; and it is a 
pleasure to simply exist, to respond to our environ- 
ment, to absorb the forces of nature, to grow and to 
help others to grow. What wonder, then, that the 
darling desire of man's heart in all ages is to secure 
Life Eternal. 

But is it not possible for this instinct, this passion, 
like any other, to overleap itself? May we not, by un- 
duly exalting its importance, by dwelling upon it to 
the neglect of other equally God-given impulses and 
desires, develop it into positively abnormal if not 
morbid forms? Can we not by cherishing false ideals 
in connexion with it, fall into serious error, and even 
so change its tendency as to make it a source of more 
distress, apprehension, and bitterness, than of joy, 
confidence, and hope ? 

It is hardly necessary to answer the question : it 
not only may be, but it has been done in many a de- 
monology and also in not a few theologies, until at 
more than one period of the world's history, men have 
been, in the pathetic language of the Great Apostle, 
"through the fear of death, all their life long, subject 
to bondage." Like any other instinct unbalanced by 
counteracting impulses, given a permanent majority 
in the parliament of tendencies and relieved by eccle- 
siastical sanction from liability to executive veto, it has 
too often brought its own punishment with it, and has 
quadrupled the natural fear of death by the dread of 
what may follow in the ' ' life beyond. " That tragedy of 
the ages, "Hamlet," is at heart a titanic picture of a 
noble nature, a courageous soul, a magnificent intellect, 
palsied, unbalanced, and ultimately all but ruined by 
too keen an appreciation of the possibilities of the 
after-world. At every turn his "native hue of resolu- 
tion is sicklied o'er with the pale cast of thought" — of 
this thought — ■,his righteous longing for vengeance 
upon the skulking assassin, his fierce desire to be the 
instrument of heaven's retribution, when failing him 
no other can be, are sternly suppressed lest he should 
"couple Hell " with his mission of justice. This leaves 
him inspired by absolutely no o'ermastering passion 
save a sense of the horrors of his father's condition 

and the utter hopelessness of relieving them by any 
effort on his part. What wonder this failed to spur 
him to action ? His constant fear is that the ghost 
"may be a devil" who "out of my weakness and my 
melancholy abuses me to damn me." Contrast his 
attitude with that of that commonplace, but hot- 
blooded young fellow, Laertes, who bursts into the 
presence of royalty itself with the furious declaration, 

"To hell allegiance. 
To this point I stand 

That both the worlds I give to negligence. 
Let come what comes, only I'll be revenged 
Most thoroughly for my father." 

Which is the nobler attitude, the "natural" or 
the "celestial" one. He refuses to slay the vile mur- 
derer of his father, because forsooth he finds him at 
his prayers, and dreads that this may bar his punish- 
ment in the future world and send him to heaven, 
which would be "hire and salary, not revenge." He 
utterly and fatally mistakes the proportion of things 
in this life by persistently regarding them in the light 
of a future one. And we have most of us, alas, beeij 
personally acquainted with a Hamlet. 

The earliest and perhaps most commonly accepted 
conception of eternal life is, that inasmuch as our life 
here is in the main happy and desirable, that all that 
is needed to insure our eternal happiness is an indefi- 
nite continuation of our personal existence. It is this 
childish view which is still largely responsible for the 
way in which we, even in the nineteenth century, re- 
gard death as the "King of Terrors," the chief ®f 
evils, and the one great blot upon the face of nature. 
Theologically it has developed into the theory that 
death is a punishment for and result of sin, and it is 
generally assumed to have come into the world at the 
Fall in the Garden of Eden, although, strangely 
enough, there is absolutely no foundation for such a 
conception of death in the narrative of that matchless 
parable itself, and very httle in any other part of 
Scripture outside the splendid imagery of Paul. In- 
deed the poem itself implies the contrary, inasmuch 
as our first parents were turned out of Eden "lest 
they eat of the tree of life and live forever," cease to 
be mortal, in fact. In short, this view of death is 
taught neither by science nor by Scripture, reasonably 
interpreted. Death is essentially a vital process of 



transcendent importance, a blessing instead of a curse, 
a reward, not a punishment. 

Whence then comes this fear of death of which we 
hear so much and which is so continually appealed to 
as one of the most overmastering passions of human- 
ity. Is it a natural or manufactured dread? Mainly, 
the latter. 

There is unquestionably a genuine natural basis 
for it in the instinctive shrinking from the pain of 
wounds, the weakness and weariness of the sick-bed, 
the thickening speech, the darkening eye. A natural 
dread of ceasing to live, to enjoy, to feel, of leaving 
the sunshine, the music, the loving and fighting be- 
hind us. But these are comparatively slight and tran- 
sient feelings, which shrivel in a moment in the glow 
of any powerful emotion, such as love, or ambition, 
even hunger, or revenge. As Bacon quaintly re- 
marks : "It is worth the noting that there is no pas- 
sion in the mind of man so weak, but it meets and 
masters the fear of death." 

There is also the shudder at the pall, the hearse, 
Seneca's " array of the death-bed which has more hor- 
rors than death itself," the darkness and cold of the 
tomb, the tooth of the worm, the rain and the storm. 
But this disappears almost as soon as our attention is 
called to it, for science assures us at once that the 
body cannot, and religion that the soul does not, reck 
aught of any of these. 

The main and real bitterness of death is the dread 
of a Future Life. 

One of the principal "consolations" of religion con- 
sists in allaying the fear which it has itself conjured 
up. "Men fear death as children fear to go in the 
dark, and as that natural fear in children is increased 
with tales, so is the other." (Bacon.) 

The simplest and most primitive form in which this 
wide-spread idea of a personal existence after death 
is found to exist is in the religious beliefs of most sav- 
age tribes of a low grade of culture, such as the Tas- 
manians and Australians. 

Here it is simply a vague belief that the souls of 
men become demons or spirits after their death and 
evidently owes its origin to the appearance in dreams 
of the images of ancestors or deceased friends, thus 
proving to the aboriginal mind that they still exist. 
These ancestral ghosts, together with the demons of 
the streams and storms receive a fitful sort of worship, 
to keep them from injuring the living. There is, of 
course, no idea whatever of reward or punishment in 
this "heaven," and the "immortality" conception is 
not confined to human beings, but extends also to ani- 
mals and things such as weapons, utensils, and orna- 
ments (which are seen upon or in the hands of the 
dream-visions aforesaid), which are accordingly buried 

or burned with the corpse, that their ghosts may ac- 
company him to the hereafter. 

As the tribe rises notch by notch in the scale, these 
vague and misty fancies assume gradually more and 
more definite and orderly forms. A sort of order of 
rank is established among the ancestor ghosts and 
" forces-of-nature " demons, and from the chief among 
them are selected patron spirits and deities of the 
tribe. Thus the gods are born. Corresponding with 
this increase of dignity comes the necessity of a defi- 
nite place of residence for beings of such exalted rank 
and the "hereafter" or " future-world " is assigned to 
them whither the spirits of the dead resort to become 
their subjects, and Heaven is invented. This is us- 
ually situated on the other side of some impassable 
mountain-chain, or across the nearest lake or ocean, 
or at the end of some cavern in the bowels of the 
earth : anywhere in fact that no member of the tribe 
has ever penetrated. This conception is gradually 
developed and embellished until it reaches the famil- 
iar "Happy hunting ground " stage, so well exempli- 
fied in the legends of our North American Indians. 
This future life is a frank and obvious copy of the 
present one, a gilded and rose- colored reproduction 
and continuation of the joys of earthly existence. 

' Heaven but the vis; 
And Hell the shado 

1 of fulfilled desire, 
of a soul on fire." 

It has been held in identical or strikingly similar 
forms by almost every tribe or race in the world : in 
the upper stages of savagery, the lower and middle of 
barbarism, and even on into well-developed stages of 
civilisation. It is or was the belief, for instance, of 
tribes so widely separated in space, in time, and in 
culture as the South Sea Islanders, the Tartars of Si- 
beria, the Apaches, and the Germans of Tacitus's 
time, our own ancestors. 

Mutatis mutandis the spirits of the dead hunt the 
spirits of the buffaloes, which never cease to be plen- 
tiful, over prairies which are green the year round, 
upon horses which never tire, and with weapons and 
garments that never grow old. 

One of the most interesting things about this stage 
of the belief is that as in the former one the immortal- 
ity is not confined to human beings, but embraces the 
animals of the chase, horses, dogs, bows and arrows, 
cooking-utensils, garments, and even articles of food. 
The buffalo which the spirit of the good Indian pur- 
sues over the ever green prairies are the spirits of 
those which he has killed during his lifetime. The 
ghost of his favorite horse while on earth bears him 
in the chase, the soul of his faithful dog keeps him 
company, the ghost of his former trusty bow is in his 
hand, the shade of his treasured necklace of bears- 
claws encircles his phantom neck. Great pains have 



been taken and heavy expenses incurred in order to 
bury all the latter with him : horse, dog, weapons, 
costly furs, wampum, priceless ornaments, nay, even 
food and tinder-box so that their spirits may accom- 
pany his on his distant journey. This originally kindly 
and charitable ceremony has developed unfortunately 
into some of the most hideous and ghastly rites known 
to history, such as the killing or burning of wives, sol- 
diers, musicians, servants and others upon the grave 
or pyre in order that the dead man may have the ben- 
efit of their company and services. And an obvious 
survival of this idea still exists in the senseless and at 
times even ruinous pomp and display of modern fu- 
nerals with their long and imposing procession of 
mourners and civic, military, or fraternal organisa- 
tions. In military funerals a still more obvious rem- 
nant is seen in the custom of leading the dead man's 
horse directly behind the coffin to the grave. 

As the tribe grows, expands, and advances, ships 
are built, wars are waged, voyages and expeditions at 
discovery undertaken until geography is born and the 
idea of a future world somewhere upon earth's surface 
has to be abandoned. Henceforward it is relegated 
either to the region of the sky, whose name "heaven " 
is still borne by the most advanced and modern con- 
ception of it, or to the bowels of the earth as its other 
classical modern name the "infernal ('inferior') re- 
gions " still implies. In most cases the belief soon 
comes to include both localities. The higher as the 
abode first of the gods and heroes or princes of the 
highest rank only, who were thought worthy to be- 
come "immortals" and later by degrees of the pious 
and faithful of all ranks. The lower as the destina- 
tion first, of all the lesser divinities and all ordinary 
mortals of whatever degree of moral merit, and later 
gradually changing to a place of exile and punishment 
for rebellious demons and criminals, unbelievers, lib- 
ertines, heretics, and offenders of every description. 

A well-known illustration of the early form of this 
stage of the idea is the Greek Olympus- Hades. The 
"upper" world did not even quite reach the sky, but 
was on the summit of Mount Olympus and was ten- 
anted solely by the gods and a few nymphs and mor- 
tals of such extraordinary merit, beauty, or direct 
blood-relation to the divinities as to render them 
worthy of elevation to divine honors. The "lower" 
world was a cold, comfortless, shadowy region below 
the earth, where the shades of all mortals save the 
brilliant exceptions mentioned were condemned to 
pace out a monotonous existence in the meadows of 
asphodel. Even such redoubtable heroes as Achilles, 
Agamemnon, and Hector could not escape it. Al- 
though there was no idea whatever of punishment or 
disgrace connected with it and Pluto was merely an 
inferior divinity who acted as governor-general of the 

colony, yet there was nothing cheerful or attractive 
about the conception and much that was repulsive. 

The shades were represented as being literally 
"ghosts of their former selves," still hearing and 
showing the wounds that caused their death, mourn- 
ing the loss of their joyous earth-life, their friends, 
their horses and cattle, their wine and gold, their very 
voices faded to a gibbering squeak. Achilles longs to 
come up to earth again, even though it were as the 
meanest slave that toils. The devoutest Greek de- 
parted this life with extreme reluctance and nothing 
but sighs and regrets for the joys he was leaving. He 
made all he possibly could out of this life, for he ex- 
pected nothing in the next. And take him altogether 
he was about the best and most useful citizen the 
world has ever had and has actually achieved the 
most glorious immortality. Perhaps on this very ac- 
count, perhaps not. 

Cruder in some particulars and infinitely less ar- 
tistic, but with a rough justice and fearless manliness 
about it which lifts it really far above Olympus, was 
the Valhalla of our fierce Norse ancestors. This has 
many points of resemblance to the "happy hunting- 
ground stage," for we find the heroes 

*' In the halls where Runic Odin howls his war-song to the gale," 

seated around the massive board, loaded with the 
souls of their favorite meats, drinking mead out of 
cups which could never be emptied, issuing forth 
every morning, not only to fight but actually to slay 
and be slain in furious combat, victors and vanquished 
alike, however, recovering from their wounds, or com- 
ing to life again, in time for the night's carouse. It 
was a frank copy of the joys of this life writ in large 
childish characters ; its naivete reminds one of the 
enthusiasm of a celebrated surgeon who declared that 
if there were no amputations in heaven he didn't want 
to go there. It was essentially a fighter's paradise, 
to which only warriors and their wives, mothers, or 
daughters could gain admittance. Its passport was 
death in battle, and the warrior who was luckless 
enough to die a "straw-death" would have himself 
scratched with a spear in order that he might come 
before its gates with Odin's mark. It was far in ad- 
vance of Olympus in that it was not reserved for the 
especial favorites of capricious gods, but could be 
claimed as a right by every warrior (and all men were 
such in those days) who had reached a certain stan- 
dard of bravery and truthfulness. The vast majority 
of the race, however, were forced to content them- 
selves with an abode in chilly, foggy regions in the 
bowels of the earth, presided over by the earth-god- 
dess Hela, whose name has been modified into our 
modern "hell." There was no thought of punish- 
ment, or even of disgrace, except perhaps such flavor 
of it as might be implied in failure to reach Valhalla; 



'twas simply a dreary, monotonous, colorless exis- 
tence, a sort of necessary old age after the fierce, lov- 
ing, fighting youth of this life. If the Norse ideal of 
heaven was far below the Christian, its hell was a far 
more humane conception than that fierce and gloomy 
Oriental idea to which its name has been transferred 
and which has become by a sad travesty the peculiar 
possession and pride of the "Gospel of Love." 

The Mohammedan Paradise was another concep- 
tion of the same class, higher in that it recognised 
broader grounds of admission than simple war-like 
courage and truthfulness, but infinitely lower in the 
purely sensual and self-indulgent and almost degene- 
rating character of the rewards offered, the exclusion 
of woman except in so far as she can gratify man's 
passions, and the recognition of "faith" as a substi- 
tute for "works." Its houris, its palms, its divans, 
its fountains, its delicious fruits, its gardens, are such 
obvious and vulgar reproductions of earthly ones, that 
there is little difficulty in believing the story told by 
certain historians that Mohammed actually constructed 
such a "paradise" as the Koran describes in some 
lovely but inaccessible mountain-valley, to which from 
time to time certain of his faithful followers would be 
transported while under the influence of an opiate. 
After being permitted to remain there a few hours or 
days their food would again be drugged, and they 
would be brought back to their tents to testify to 
others on their return to consciousness that the half 
had not been told. Like Valhalla, death in battle 
against the infidel was its surest passport, and the ab- 
solute reckless bravery which this belief developed in 
the two races is, to say the least, a highly suggestive 
commentary upon our statement that the greatest 
part of the fear of death is the dread of a future life. 

Another great group of beliefs, the Egyptian Mys- 
teries, have so completely succeeded in remaining 
what their name implied (as indeed they were in- 
tended to) that little or no definite idea can be formed 
of their conception of a future life. All we can catch 
is occasional glimpses of an ever-shifting and misty 
group of deities, some in animal, some in human form, 
Osiris and Amenti, Thoth and Ptah, Anubis and Isis, 
whose only definite function appears that of a court 
of inquiry and judgment upon the souls of the dead. 
They require a strict account of the deeds done in the 
body, the heart of the dead man is weighed in the 
scales of Truth, etc. Morality rather than piety seems 
to be demanded by them, but as to the nature of the 
rewards granted or punishments inflicted we are left 
almost entirely in the dark. Simply a dim but ma- 
jestic vision of a judgment after death in which Virtue 
is its own reward and Sin its own punishment. 

The most singular conception of the Life to come is 
that held by that religion which in age, dignity, and 

number of adherents stands at the head of the great 
world-religions. At first sight it appears to be the 
very apotheosis of pessimism and nihilism, and yet it 
is the most ingenious, philosophic, and logical work- 
ing-out of the supernatural idea which the world has 
ever seen. Much of its thought is magnificent; its 
great fundamental conception that the only thing 
which is immortal is character {karma) and that a mil- 
lion generations have been needed to develop it, that 
many of its stages are passed in animal form, and that 
there is an essential, spiritual relationship between 
men, animals, and even plants, is not only matchless 
in its poetic beauty, but almost scientific in its truth- 

The transmigration of souls is a mystic foreshadow- 
ing of Darwinism. It is by far the justest and most 
sweetly reasonable conception of an individual future 
life which has ever yet been developed. But like 
other religions it is weakest at the point of which it 
boasts itself most loudly. Its scheme of development 
up to the level of ^^ Homo integer vitae" is superb in 
its insight, its logic, and its truthfulness. Its view of 
the past is inspiring, noble, but for the future it has 
nothing to offer but a wearisome and intolerable repe- 
tition of former stages of incarnation, until at last in 
the very weariness of despair the soul is glad to take 
refuge in Nirvana, " neither-consciousness-nor-uncon- 
sciousness," "absorption into the soul of the uni- 
verse," individual annihilation, eternal rest. 

The desirableness of Nirvana has also been justi- 
fied by some Buddhist sages from the same theo- 
logical standpoint on the familiar priestly ground that 
existence is desire and desire is sin ! therefore only 
by destroying existence can sin be destroj'ed and 
the sujnmum bonum reached. Again, like most reli- 
gions it is imposing while generalising upon the past, 
but it fails when it attempts to forecast the future. As 
a scheme of the past, it is beautiful, fascinating ; as a 
scheme of the future, it is found wanting. And just 
as elsewhere the prospect of a gloomy after-world has 
multiplied tenfold the fear of death. But it is a superb 
allegory. Rid the puny individual of this world-burden 
of unending existence and eternal responsibility ; let 
the growth of karma be that of the race, and each in- 
carnation a new, glad personality; let the good that 
was in each, in its influence and its memory become a 
part of the constitution of the race — immortal in fact, 
and the Darwinist may declare to the Buddhist as Paul 
did to the Athenians on Mars Hill, "Whom therefore 
ye ignorantly worship, Him declare I unto you." 

When we attempt to study that view of the future 
life known as the Christian Heaven, we quickly find 
that we have to deal with two almost wholly distinct 
and widely different conceptions. One of these is the 
popular, orthodox "Heaven "of the prayer-meeting 



and Sunday-school, and the other is the "Kingdom 
of Heaven " of Christ's teachings, two utterly dissim- 
ilar regions. 

The essential features of the old-fashioned ortho- 
dox heaven are briefly, a city of great beauty whose 
streets are paved with pure gold, whose twelve gates 
are constructed each of a single pearl, its walls of jas- 
per and its foundations of precious stones. There is 
no night, and no sea ; while through the midst of the 
city flows a sparkling river with ever-bearing fruit- 
trees on either bank. Here the redeemed abide for- 
ever and ever, clad in white and shining garments, 
with crowns of gold upon their heads, with harps and 
palm branches in their hands. They also acquire the 
power of flying and become "angels." Their entire 
time is occupied by chanting praises and bowing down 
before a great white throne ; as all mysteries are re- 
vealed to them there is no need of mental effort, and 
as there is neither hunger or thirst or pain of any kind, 
bodil3' effort is equally unnecessary. In short, it is 
as one godly old hymn-writer has expressed it, a place 
"where congregations ne'er break up, and Sabbaths 
have no end." 

To this wondrous city, souls of all true believers 
are carried immediately after death by certain winged 
beings known as angels : to find one of the gates afore- 
said either barely "ajar," half shut, or flung widely 
open for their admittance, according to the degree of 
their merit. The redeemed all become young and 
beautiful, yet retain enough of their earthly likeness 
to be readily recognisable by all their friends who have 
preceded or who may follow them. They are wel- 
comed at the gate by the former and themselves look 
eagerly forward to the coming of the latter. This is 
bad enough, but it is reserved for a very small minor- 
ity of the race as a special favor. 

Not far from the walls of this city, separated from 
it only by a great gulf which is so narrow as to read- 
ily permit recognition to take place across it, is a fiery 
pit, the abode of the lost. Here nine-tenths of the 
race are condemned to writhe through all eternity, 
tortured by blistering heat, by raging thirst, by suf- 
focating sulphur-fumes, and every agony that the in- 
genuity of devils can devise, so that in clear view of 
the beautiful city, " the smoke of their torment ascend- 
eth for ever and ever." So close are these poor 
wretches to the jasper walls that their cries for mercy 
can be distinctly heard, as in case of Dives and Laza- 
rus. From a mere human standpoint, one would have 
supposed that this would have somewhat interfered 
with the peace of mind of the redeemed, especially as 
they could readily recognise the voices of a majority 
of their friends and loved ones : but their dispositions 
have become so spiritual and celestial that they do 
not mind it at all ; indeed, one good Calvinistic divine 

has specially dwelt upon the watching of the tortures 
of the damned and congratulating oneself upon escap- 
ing therefrom, as one of the joys of heaven. 

Of this whole popular conception, it may simply 
be said that it is almost absolutely without foundation 
in the teachings of the Master ; that what little part 
of its imagery is biblical is taken chiefly from the Rev- 
elation of John, a book which is now declared by a 
majority of orthodox critics to be a burning picture of 
the persecutions under Nero and mystic prophecy of 
the ultimate triumph of the early Church without any 
reference to the future life. As to its theory that the 
souls proceed to heaven at once after death, the gos- 
pels are so vague that it is impossible to decide whether 
this passage occurs before or after the Last Judgment; 
the churches themselves have differed widely on this 
point, and one large body still holds that souls sleep 
in the grave with the body until awakened by the 
Last Trump. Its "recognition" hope is nowhere 
distinctly stated and barely implied in three passages, 
while as to its belief, that our souls become angels 
and that the latter have wings, it has not a word of 
support in the Scriptures. Its inferior and attendant 
spirits are taken bodily from the pages of Dante and 
Milton. In short, it is simply a "Happy Hunting- 
Ground " rearranged according to saintly and fem- 
nine ideas, combined with a Hades which for injus- 
tice, atrocity, and savage vindictiveness is unparal- 
leled even in the cannibal islands. 

The " Kingdom of Heaven," " Kingdom of God," 
"Life Everlasting" of the Master's own teachings is 
a conception of widely different form and temper. Its 
description consists principally of a noble strain of 
lofty and fearless prophecy, of the ultimate triumph 
of Good and defeat of Evil which throbs like an ever- 
recurring Leitmotiv through all of the Four Gospels. 
Like all true music it is beautiful, entrancing, sweetly 
mysterious. Its lofty beauty is marred by no childish 
working-out of trivial details. The great chord is 
struck by a master-hand, and the quivering over-tones 
of each responsive heart are left to finish the melodj'. 
"Every work of man shall be brought into judgment, 
whether it be good or whether it be evil." Righteous- 
ness and Truth shall and must prevail. Evil and 
falsehood will certainly both punish and defeat them- 
selves : "the meek shall inherit the earth"; this is 
the burden of His song. As to the geographical where, 
and the chronological when. He is divinely silent. It 
is enough for us to know that it shall be hereafter and 
that it begins now r nay, that this divine process is 
actually going on within us, about us, among us, if 
we will only open our clouded eyes to see it. The 
Eternal Life of the Master is now, and has been from 
all eternity. "He that believeth on the Son hath ever- 
lasting life," His commandment is life everlasting. 



"The Kingdom of God is within you." "This is life 
everlasting, that they may know thee, the only true 

This is no mere endless prolongation of petty indi- 
vidual existence. It is something far nobler and higher 
than this. Hear Farrar's burning words : 

" The use of the word aliivwc, and of its Hebrew equivalent, 
a/am, throughout the whole of Scripture, ought to have been suf- 
6cient to prove to every thoughtful and unbiassed student that it 
altogether transcends the thoroughly vulgar and unmeaning con- 
ception of 'endless.' Nothing, perhaps, tends to prove more 
clearly the difficulty of eradicating an error that has once taken 
deep and age-long root in the minds of 'theologians,' than the 
fact that it should still be necessary to prove that the word 'eter- 
nal,' far from being a mere equivalent -for 'everlasting,' never 
means ' everlasting ' at all, except by reflexion from the substan- 
tives to which it is joined ; that it is only joined to those substan- 
tives because it connotes ideas which transcend all time ; that to 
make it mean nothing but time endlessly prolonged, is to degrade 
it by filling it with a merely relative conception v/hich it is meant 
to supersede and by emptying it of all the highest conceptions 
which it properly includes." 

As to a continued individual existence after death 
it is nowhere definitely taught by the Master, and is 
only even implied on any broad and reasonable prin- 
ciple of interpretation in three of his sayings. This 
may seem an extreme statement, but I challenge proof 
to the contrary from the Gospels. The three pas- 
sages alluded to are the parable of Dives and Laza- 
rus, the decision upon the case of the woman who had 
had seven husbands, and the promise to the thief on 
the cross. The first of these is a parable pure and 
simple, spoken to the scofSng, sneering Pharisees. 
The story is taken directly and bodily from Rabbinical 
literature — a weapon from their own armory turned 
against them with deadliest effect. If it be regarded 
as anything more than this it is bathos, for it depicts 
a state of affairs which would be almost more intoler- 
able for the saved than for the lost. 

In the second instance the question is squarely 
asked and an answer distinctly declined. All that the 
Master vouchsafes in his wisdom is that Abraham, 
Isaac, and Jacob are still " living " (of which the whole 
Jewish nation was bodily proof), but as to the woman 
in question " in the resurrection they neither marry 
nor are given in marriage, but are as the angels of 
God." To the dying thief were spoken the thrilling 
words, " This day shalt thou be with me in paradise." 
And was he not? Yea, verily, in the paradise of the 
love and sympathy of all Christian hearts through all 
the ages since and to come. If it is to be taken liter- 
ally, what are we to make of Christ's saying to Mary, 
iivo days later in the garden of the sepulchre, "Touch 
me not, for I am not yet ascended unto my Father." 

All other references of this sort which have even 
the appearance of being personal are to a mysterious 
"second coming," "in the clouds of heaven," which 

it is distinctly stated, shall take place within the life- 
time of that generation (Matthew xvi., 28 ; Mark xii., 
25 ; Luke xx. , 35, and xxiv., 34), but as to whose oc- 
currence history is silent. All other allusions such as 
"If a man keep my commandments he shall never 
taste of death, " " In my Father's house are many man- 
sions, " are not only as well, but better explained by 
referring them to the ultimate triumph of Good and 
the deathlessness of Truth. Why, when Christ dis- 
tinctly tells us that "the Kingdom of God is within" 
us, that "to know God is life everlasting" and that 
He is the Resurrection — the bewilderingly beautiful 
instance of fhe Creation of Life out of the dust of the 
earth — we should obstinately persist in referring and 
postponing all three to some mysterious future region, 
"beyond the skies and beyond the tomb," is hard to 
understand. Even that matchless epitome of the 
wants and aspirations of the human heart, the Lord's 
Prayer (Revised Version, Luke), contains not a word 
of allusion to such a region. The grandly majestic 
"Last Judgment" is the Verdict of History, and noth- 
ing could be more "unorthodox" than its superb cri- 
terion, which is neither creed, nor faith, nor even in- 
tentional service of God ("Lord, when saw we thee 
an hungered and fed thee?"), but the broad and no- 
ble principle of common humanity, "Inasmuch as ye 
did it unto the least of these my brethren, ye did it 
unto me." 

In short, the " ^aoj} aiojyios" of Christ is literally 
the " Life of the Ages " of Darwin. 

To what conclusion, now, are we led by this review 
of the type-religions of the world, as to the effect of a 
belief in a future life upon the fear of death. Only 
one seems possible, that it increases it five-fold. The 
happy hunting-ground is reserved only for chiefs 
and warriors of highest renown, and many are the 
risks which even these have to run upon their passage 
thither. Only a few of the most favored of mortals 
can hope to scale Olympus. The halls of Odin open 
to none save heroes of high renown or faultless cour- 
age. The paradise of Mohammed is reserved for 
the faithful who have sealed their devotion with their 
blood, and admits neither women nor children. Nir- 
vana is a "heaven" of such doubtful attractiveness 
as to require a good deal of philosophy to enable 
one to contemplate its attainment with resignation ; 
while as to the orthodox Christian heaven : "Strait is 
the gate and narrow is the way that leadeth unto Life, 
and few there be that find it. " Its most enthusiastic 
proclaimers do not offer the hope that more than a 
very small percentage of the race will ever reach it. 
Indeed, they seem almost inclined to gloat over the 
prospect of having it all to themselves. None but 
" desirable" people will be admitted there, they trust. 
In brief, every conception of an individual future life 



condemns the vast majority of men to a state of either 
cheerless, ghostly gloom, or of absolute torment. De- 
stroy such a belief and you rob death of half its ter- 
rors. 'Tis not dying that men dread so much as liv- 
ing again, and "thus conscience doth make cowards 
of us all." 

As to the so-called " restraining influence " of such 
a belief and the extent to which it supports and en- 
forces morality, the more attentively this is consid- 
ered the less will be found to be its value. High, 
noble natures need no such incentive ; base ones are 
but little affected by it. Assure a scoundrel of im- 
munity from punishment in this world, which is un- 
fortunately usually implied in the orthodox view, and 
he will risk the next one. If he is willing to run the 
gauntlet of the immediate constable and jail, how 
much more that of the remote possibilities of hell ? 
The criminal is essentially the man who blindly gluts 
the craving of to-day, with an utter disregard of to- 

Besides, there is always the chance of a "death- 
bed repentance" and usually that of buying absolu- 
tion by devoting part of the spoils to the Church. 
" Charity covereth a multitude of sins." In Catholic 
countries it is notorious that the more colossally vil- 
lainous the brigand the more devout his piety and 
magnificent his offerings. Indeed, a distinguished 
English penologist (Havelock Ellis : The Criminal') 
goes so far as to open his chapter on "The Religion 
of the Criminal" with the horrifying remark, "In all 
countries religion or superstition is intimately con- 
nected with crime." As a check for the well-disposed 
it is unnecessary ; for the ill-disposed, worthless or 
worse. Furthermore, it must not be overlooked that 
whatever value it may have in this respect has to be 
offset by the torturings, human sacrifices, funeral vic- 
tims, "head-hunting," child-burning, Jesuit massa- 
cres, thuggism, "infant-damnation," Mormon polyg- 
amy, and other such observances and beliefs which 
are inspired by it alone. 

We personally fought at the battle of Hastings and 
shall in Armageddon. We are a part of all that ever 
has been or is to come. We have lived from the 
earliest appearance of life upon this cooling globe and 
shall live through all eternity in our descendants or 
in those whose existence ours has helped to make 
possible. All that is true, all that is good, all that is 
brave and virtuous, that "makes for righteousness" 
in us and in our influence cannot die, but has become 
part of the framework of the universe, has been painted 
in the great picture-gallery of nature to bless and 
cheer generations yet unborn. This, to my vision, is 
the true "Eternal Life," or as Zodt] aioovio'S \% better 
translated "the life of the aeons," "The Life of the 
Ages." All in us that is base, all that is cowardly, all 

that is untrue, falls by its own weight, decays by "the 
worm that dieth not," is consumed by "the fire that 
is not quenched." 

What wonder that the righteous are described as 
"saved," and the unrighteous as "lost." The ques- 
tion of salvation becomes, not the selfish one "shall 
I as an individual live after death in a state of happi- 
ness, or misery ? " but the nobler, unselfish one " How 
much of all my work, my character, my influence, my 
self will become part of the progress of the race and 
of the history of the universe?" 

All faiths, all views agree in this one grand, con- 
soling thought, that every brave deed, every noble 
effort is of itself immortal. That the good cannot die, 
and that every effort, however feeble or apparently 
unsuccessful to make the world happier for our having 
lived in it, shall have its reward. 



The Great Kite Syndicate. 

Three sticks and a hank of twine and a roll of pa- 
per met in jolly good fellowship at a tavern. I have for- 
gotten the name of the country where this happened, 
but am inclined to think it must have been Cathay, 
since there — as travellers commonly report — kite-fly- 
ing is a pastime much in vogue. 

All these good fellows fell to talking, as sticks and 
twine and paper talk, and to gabble about their affairs. 
They were, as I learned by listening, in business to- 
gether, and the partnership they had formed was 
called the Kite Syndicate, by which I understood they 
had entered into a mercantile alliance to unite each 
his several functions towards the development and 
perfection of what should be the finest kite ever seen 
in that land. 

So at the table in the wine room they planned, and 
afterwards adjourned to a greensward hard by, their 
purpose being here, without interruption, to perfect 
their purpose in practice, as previously their plans 
had been perfected in principle. 

Arrived in the field, the paper spread himself out 
flat, and the sticks stretched themselves, and the string 
unknotted, and then at once, with one voice, all pro- 
claimed themselves quite ready, all three, to be united 
in the holy bonds of kitehood. 

The paper said, " I will cut myself to the desired 
shape," and the sticks, each for himself, "I will lay 
myself in the right place and at the right angle," and 
the cord, "I will twist myself about my brothers, the 
sticks, and about the edges and folds of my cousin, 
the paper"; and all together exclaimed, "What a fine 
kite we shall be ! " 

But when the paper would have cut himself into 



shape, he found it quite impossible, and so when the 
sticks tried to form the right angles with each other, 
and the string when he would twist and twine and 
bind. The paper could change position, but of him- 
self could not alter his form, and though the sticks 
could writhe and wiggle and lie straight or criss-cross 
at will, to regulate their proper relations for becoming 
part of a kite was quite futile ; and the string, he too 
could coil and uncoil, and stretch out and draw in, 
but the peculiar power and genius that goes to bind- 
ing, sewing, and tying he found was denied him. 

"Woe is us!" they cried in unison, "of what 
avail is it to be possessed of capacities if capabilities 
be lacking?" 

"Beautifully expressed," said a kite-maker, who 
chanced to be passing, "and moreover true, which is 
not always the case with beautiful expressions. Now 
you keep quiet and let me arrange you." 

So saying, the kite-maker took shears and cut the 
paper, and laid the sticks, and twisted and twined the 
cord, till after an interval he had made all ready, when 
he raised the kite, and a brisk breeze blowing, it sailed 
off and up bravely into the sky, to the satisfaction of 
its component parts, who, far from honoring the kite- 
maker or rightly appreciating him, said among them- 
selves, complacently, " How wise we are, — we, the 
great Kite Syndicate. " 

A fool heard them and laughed. " Imbeciles," 
said he, "they ought to know and understand that all 
their kite was the handiwork of the Almighty Kite- 
maker, who both builds and sails. 

A philosopher passing, heard the fool and saw the 
kite. He did not stop to argue with the fool (because 
he was a philosopher), but he pondered within him- 
self somewhat on this wise : Of what avail would even 
the Almighty Kite-maker's craft be without material, 
and not even he could raise the kite when constructed, 
if the breeze did not blow. Therefore, I conclude 
that to the attainment of a desired end three things 
are essential : (i) that which is, (2) that which moves, 
(3) that which arranges. 

And thenceforth he taught these truths as the foun- 
dation of philosophy, but he taught them in parables. 


Louis Prang, the famous art publisher of Boston, succeeds in 
offering to the public constantly new designs of the same favorite 
themes in his beautiful Christmas and Easter-greetings, which 
latter have just appeared in a novel style and a novel dress. 
While his cards and booklets are always the best that art can pro- 
duce, they are peculiarly American, and possess a warmer air than 
similar European productions. All the flowers of spring find an 
appreciative consideration. There are entire booklets dedicated 
exclusively to the passion-flower or the Easter-lily, to the lily of 
the valley, and violets, and again, for those who love variety there 
are collections in which all the various blossoms of the spring 
are represented. 

The new style of Japanese imitation will meet the taste of 
many, for it is fashionable now, and, indeed, it is interesting for 
a change ; but, in the interest of art, we do not believe that the 
fashion will last. The style imitates certain shortcomings of the 
Japanese without attaining that delicate flavor of genius which is 
the secret of the attractiveness of Japanese art. 

Bessie Grey illustrated a day's life of the morning-glory from 
the moment that "beneath Dawn's dainty fingers all the bind- 
weed buds untwist," until the sun goes down. Then 

"The closed cups of the blue flower of light. 
Bury their secret from the curious night." 

Another booklet. The Message of the Lilies, is eminently an 
Easter-greeting, announcing the lesson of the resurrection that 
takes place in nature, which is summed up in the following lines 

" 'Tis the victor-song of triumph. 

The release of all creation ; 
'Tis the song of resurrection. 

Making glad our Easter days. 
'Tis the oil of joy for mourning. 

And for heaviness 'tis praise. 

" Listen, listen, men and women t 

For the language is of Heaven, 

And to every heart it speaketh 

Just the word it ne.edeth best. — 

Only this I know, — 

To each it bringeth peace and bringeth rest.' 

Washington's Addresses to the Churches are published as No. 
65 of the Old South Leaflets and can be had for five cents from 
"the Directors of the Old South Studies in History, Boston, 

N. B.— By special arrangements with the Cosmopolitan Publishing 
Company we are enabled to offer a full year's subscription to the two 
magazines, THE COSMOPOLITAN and THE OPEN COURT, at the un- 
usually low price of $1.75. This advantageous offer holds good for all 
new subscriptions and for renewals, until retracted.— The Open Court 
Publishing Company. 



CHICAGO, ILLINOIS, Post Office Drawer F. 

E. C. HEQELER, Publishes. 

DR. PAUL CARDS, Editor. 


$1.00 PER YEAR. $0.60 FOR SIX MONTHS. 

N. B. Binding Cases for single yearly volumes of The Open Court will 
be supplied on order. Price, 75 cents each. 


LIFE ETERNAL. Dr. Woods Hutchinson 4855 


Syndicate Hudor Genone 4861 

NOTES 4862 


The Open Court. 



No. 449. (Vol. X.— 14.) 

CHICAGO, APRIL 2, 1896. 

I One Dollar per Year. 
I Single Copies, 5 Cents. 

Copyright by The Open Court Publishing Co. — Reprints are permitted only on condition of giving full credit to author and publisher. 



The following considerations have developed slowly 
out of much reflexion upon the contents of The Open 
Court for January i6 — a memorable number of the pa- 
per. As I read Mr. Conway's hot philippic I felt that 
his heat was carrying him too far ; while the calm ar- 
gument of Professor Cope in defence of the new Amer- 
icanism seemed to me to proceed, here and there, upon 
a faulty analysis of the facts. On turning to the edi- 
tor's article I found remarks which were excellent in 
their way but were not occupied with the precise 
phase of the Venezuelan controversy which had all 
along seemed to me the most important. For in my 
mind the vital question takes this form : Should we 
be acting in the interest of republican institutions if 
we were to go to war with Great Britain over a boun- 
dary dispute between Venezuela and British Guiana ? 
It appears to be clear enough that the Monroe Doc- 
trine had in it from the first a touch of political ideal- 
ism ; that is, while intended primarily as a measure 
of self-preservation, it was also intended to safeguard 
the interests of republican government in the New 
World generally. In the time of the Holy Alliance, 
which was everywhere fighting democracy, it was pos- 
sible, perhaps even natural, to think that the two aims 
were ultimately one, or, in other words, that the 
smaller necessitated the larger. To-day, however, we 
are really concerned only with the idealistic aspect of 
the Doctrine. For surely no man in his senses can 
now pretend to believe that the safety of the powerful 
American Union, already bounded on the north by a 
British domain larger than its own, depends upon the 
exact position of a boundary-line in the tropical for- 
ests of South America. Whatever loyalty we feel to- 
ward the Monroe Doctrine, if it is not to be mere 
fetish-worship, must be simply the loyalty we feel to- 
ward republicanism. Hence the vital importance of 
the question whether we should be likely to promote 
the interests of republicanism, either in the world at 
large or in the New World particularly, if we were to 
let the pending controversy involve us in a war with 
Great Britain. 

To answer this question properly would require 
more space than The Open Court might wish to give 

to the subject, and would be a task for a writer with 
other qualifications than mine. My present purpose 
is much simpler, being merely to call attention to the 
importance of a right statement of the question with 
which public opinion has to deal. This I think I can 
do best by commenting briefly upon the argument of 
Professor Cope ; for I have no doubt that Professor 
Cope represents, not perhaps in every sentence and 
in every minor conclusion, but in the general drift of 
his reasoning, views which are now held by a major- 
ity of the American people. It thus becomes a ques- 
tion of momentous public interest whether his reason- 
ing is correct. 

The gist of Professor Cope's contention is as fol- 
lows : We Americans believe for good reason that a 
republican form of government is better than any 
other, and it is only natural and right that we should 
wish to protect the interests and extend the sphere of 
that which we believe to be best. But we can do noth- 
ing in Europe. There are irreconcilable antipathies 
between the monarchical systems of the Old World 
and the republicanism which we represent. The Eu- 
ropean monarchies are our natural enemies ; they hate 
us and would destroy us if they could. On the other 
hand the South American Spaniards are our natural 
friends and allies. Republicanism is already estab- 
lished in that continent, and while still in a somewhat 
turbulent state, is full of promise for the future. Let 
us therefore join hands with the South American re- 
publics, protect them at any cost against monarchical 
interference and thus save the Western hemisphere at 
any rate for republican institutions. 

Now the first question suggested to the mind by 
such an argument is that which heads this article. 
Professor Cope writes all along as if republicanism, or 
a "republican form of government," were something 
simple, definite, and capable of easy isolation in 
thought and practice. But this is evidently not so. 
There have been and there still are republics of many 
kinds. Take, for example, that of Aristides, of Cato, 
of medieval Venice ; and then add modern France, 
Switzerland, the United States, the Transvaal. Here 
are seven republican governments differing from one 
another radically in "form," that is, in political meth- 
ods and institutions. What is the common feature of 



them all that constitutes the essential nature and the 
saving virtue of republicanism ? What is, so to speak, 
the substance of the " form "? What is it that we are 
to hold dear and to fight for ? Is it any particular 
name for the chief executive ? Do we swear, for ex- 
ample, by the word "president"? Or is it the elec- 
tive character of the chief magistrate without regard 
to his tenure of office, the degree of discretionary 
power vested in him, or the character of the electo- 
rate. Is the thing we want any particular kind of suf- 
frage law or mode of representation ? Is it a bicam- 
eral parliament ? Surely we are not going to insist 
upon our own "form" for the Western hemisphere 
rather than that of France or Switzerland. We must 
regard much as unessential to the republican form. 
What then are the unessentials and what are the es- 
sentials ? 

I hope no one will think that I am here raising idle 
academic questions to befog a matter that is clear 
enough for practical purposes. It is precisely for the 
practical purposes of politics that the matter is not 
clear enough, and is in need of sharp definition. To 
illustrate : So long as it is a question for missionary 
reports, statistical tables, and map-making, we can 
well enough regard every form of nominally Christian 
missionary enterprise in Asia — whether Catholic or 
Protestant or Greek, Methodist or Baptist or Unita- 
rian — as coming under the head of the propagation of 
Christianity. But suppose we were asked to risk a 
great war for the purpose of saving Asia to Christian- 
ity : Should we not begin to ask at once, Whose Chris- 
tianity ? What do you mean by Christianity ? 

Instead of attempting a close definition of the 
thing he holds dear. Professor Cope opens the impor- 
tant part of his discussion with generalities, which, as 
it strikes me, do not help us very much. He thinks 
it a " general truth " that " any form of government 
is good if administered with due regard to human 
rights, and that any form if administered without re- 
gard to those rights is bad." He then goes on to say 
that "Americans are generally of the opinion that a 
republican form is better than any other, because it 
contains within itself the conditions for an administra- 
tion more in accordance with human right than any 
other, and is therefore more likely to be so adminis- 
tered." This seems to imply that for Professor Cope, 
as for Alexander Pope in the eighteenth century, good 
government is all a matter of administration. No 
suggestion that the character and sanction of the laws 
to be administered are an important element of the 
problem. So, too, the goodness of the republican 
form in particular is a matter of "administration in 
accordance with human rights." No hint that it has 
anything to do with the rights of the people to deter- 
mine for themselves what their laws shall be and who 

shall administer them. But passing by this point for 
the present, I wish to raise the question : What are 
"human rights"? Who can tell in an abstract and 
general way? We can tell perhaps, or, rather, good 
lawyers and learned judges can tell, often with great 
difficulty, what rights a particular people, say the 
American, the English, or the German, have claimed 
for themselves and have by hook or crook managed to 
get recognised in public law. But who can tell what 
human rights are apart from history and evolution ? 
What are the rights of a man dropped alone for life 
on an uninhabited island in the sea ? Or what are the 
mutual rights of twenty persons placed in similar cir- 
cumstances without a common language or any com- 
mon traditions ? A large number of Americans think 
they have a right to a fifty-cent dollar, to an eight- 
hour day for work, to employment on their own terms. 
Are these human rights ? If not, why not? Who is to 
be the judge ? I do not forget that the Fathers, in the 
grandiose rhetoric born of the revolutionary spirit, did 
specify "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness" 
as "inalienable rights" with which man is endowed 
by the Creator. I recognise, too, that the phrase 
"human rights," or "rights of man," has done good 
service in the language of poetry and eloquence on 
behalf of political liberty. But after all, speaking so- 
berly, what government has ever recognised any such 
inalienable rights ? Do we not alienate them quickly 
in case of a murderer, if we can get hold of him ? Did 
we not make short work of them with our conscription- 
laws during the late war? Can we get very far in any 
practical discussion with such a concept of "human 
rights "? Must we not come down very soon to legal 

It occurs to me as possible that Professor Cope 
may really have had in mind legal rights, perhaps the 
elementary rights of person and property; and that he 
may have meant to contend simply that republicanism 
offers the best guaranty for the safety of these rights 
from illegal encroachment on the part of executive or 
administrative authority. If this be his meaning, the 
question is certainly a fair one for debate, but it must 
be answered in the light of experience ; theories on 
the subject are of no use. We should have to in- 
quire, for example, whether, under the laws of each 
country, an American is in less danger of having his 
life, liberty, or property taken from him through offi- 
cial usurpation, than is, say an Englishman, or a Ger- 
man. This is a question for lawyers. But if one who 
is not a lawyer may venture to give the impression he 
has derived from observation and reading, I should say 
that all three countries are very much on a par in this 
respect, and that in all three the particular danger re- 
ferred to is now so insignificant as to be hardly worth 
bothering about in a discussion of this kind. Personal 



tyranny, assuming to rule without law, or in defiance 
of law, is not much of a dragon where there is consti- 
tutional government. Even in Russia his manners 
have been improved by the general growth of demo- 
cracy; so that now when he eats people, he is at least 
anxious to have it understood that he acts from dis- 
interested motives. 

Professor Cope observes that "the gist of the ob- 
jections to the European systems of government is 
that they are, excepting that of France, much too 
largely administered by and on behalf of privileged 
persons and classes, and not sufficiently on behalf of 
the people." Here it must be remarked that unless 
one wishes to charge extensive usurpation, this is an 
objection to the laws themselves. But if it be meant 
that the laws are bad, then the question at once 
arises : Who is the best judge as to whether a people 
has good laws properly administered? Now I have 
always supposed the distinctive character and the sav- 
ing grace of republicanism to lie in the answer which 
it gives to this question, its answer being : the people 
themselves. In other words, I have supposed that 
the heart of republicanism is simply democracy — the 
rule of the people. But by "the people " we have no 
right to understand either the very poor or the very 
rich alone ; neither workingmen, nor employers, nei- 
ther farmers, nor merchants, nor manufacturers alone ; 
not even what Mr. Lincoln called the "plain people." 
" The people " includes everybody. And since, in the 
conflict of opinions and interests, the people in this 
sense cannot all have their way, republicanism (or 
democracy) means for practical purposes the rule of 
the majority under the forms of law. It means that 
"the people," thus defined, shall have such laws as 
they like and have them administered by persons who 
are acceptable. And this, to my mind, tells the whole 
story. If any country has popular sovereignty in its 
legislature (that is, a house of elected representatives 
whose will cannot be permanently blocked by persons 
that are not elected), and if it has also an administra- 
tion that is in one way or another responsible to the 
people and ready to obey the people, — such country 
has the heart of republicanism, has all of republican- 
ism that is worth fighting for. These are the matters 
of faith ; other things are matters of opinion amongst 
republicans themselves. 

If this be correct, and I think I am not alone in 
supposing it to be so, we see at once how confusing 
and unscientific it is to speak indiscriminately of "the 
European systems of government with the exception of 
France." Why not except Switzerland also? And 
why put Russia and Germany and Great Britain on 
the same plane? Must we not make distinctions on 
every hand ? May not a "monarchy " have more or 
less of republicanism, and a "republic" more or less 

of monarchism ? The antithesis of "monarchy" to- 
day is not "republicanism," but "absolutism"; for 
the monarchy maybe "limited" and the limitation 
may be greater or less. It may have proceeded so 
far, as is actually the case in England, that the mon- 
arch, in his official capacity, is simply the organ-voice 
of the people. 

But to return to Professor Cope's "gist of the ob- 
jections," which was in a word — " privileged classes." 
Does this refer to industrial classes — manufacturers, 
for example — that manage to get legislation in their 
interest ? If so, how about the exception of France ? 
And is not our own home made of glass ? Or does it 
mean the workingmen, the farmers? If so, Germany 
has gone farther than any other country in legislation 
intended for their special benefit. Nowhere is the 
"welfare of the people " made more prominent as the 
touchstone of legislation than in Germany. Can we 
Americans cry "paternalism " from one corner of the 
mouth and "indifference to the people" from the 
other ? Or does Professor Cope mean the titled aris- 
tocrats ? If so, what privileges do they enjoy except 
such as are either purchasable for money in any part 
of the world, or else are purely social in their nature 
and hence outside the sphere of government. If they 
steal, or forge notes, or commit an assault, are they 
not arrested and tried by public law ? Can they burn 
your house or enslave your person with impunity ? 
They live in big houses and have yachts and private 
cars ; and so do we, if we can afford it. They have 
the "privilege " of being lionised in society, stared at 
in public places and written up in the newspapers ; 
so have our own millionaires if their taste runs in that 
direction. Sometimes by virtue of their wealth and 
position they get offices to which their merit would 
not entitle them ; just so with us. Some of them are 
men of character, ability, generosity and devotion to 
public duty, others are profligate, dull, selfish, and 
useless ; very much the same at home. Take away 
the hereditary titles and allow a little time for the 
nimbus to vanish and where is the very great differ- 
ence ? Shall we then hate them for their titles ? Well 
I have my democratic prejudices on that subject too, 
but I have learned to be calm. King means tribes- 
man ; duke, leader ; and count, companion ; and why 
should we not be able, in this age of the world, to 
look as serenely at a constitutional duke as at a Ken- 
tucky colonel, and see in both cases nothing but the 
man ? Professor Cope complains of the notorious so- 
cial " stratigraphy of the Englishman's mind." But 
have we not our social stratigraphy ? Have republics 
anywhere got rid of the spirit of caste ? Have the 
South American Spaniards got rid of it? Have we? 
Are we getting rid of it? Is it not a matter beyond 
the control of government and inseparable from dif- 




ferences of wealth, education, employment, and taste? 
Even if the socialist regime were realised, would not 
birds of a feather still flock together and entertain 
their private opinion of the plumage and intelligence 
of other flocks? 

But the aristocrats have large incomes, out of pro- 
portion to their "utility," and these incomes are 
"stolen" from the people. Professor Cope thinks it 
a distinguishing mark of American speech that we 
call " a spade a spade and stealing we call stealing." 
"In Europe," he continues, "the robberies of the 
most enterprising robbers have been legitimised and 
have become a part of the system under which the 
people live. Thus have arisen established royal fam- 
ilies, nobilities, and churches." But is this really a 
scientific nomenclature ? In what sense is the Prince 
of Wales or the Archbishop of Canterbury a robber ? 
Suppose that an intelligent people familiar with his- 
tory and with the arguments pro and con, and having 
full power to get what they want and get rid of what 
they do not want, deliberately prefer that the person- 
age who represents to the general eye the dignity and 
authority of the State shall bear the historic title of 
king or duke, rather than that of archon, consul, or 
president, — can we quarrel with them in the name of 
republicanism ? Is it not the essence of our beloved 
doctrine that the people shall have what they want ? 
And suppose they want a State Church, or having one 
prefer to let it stand, — can we forbid them that luxury 
in the name of republicanism ? We have a public 
life-saving service ; why should not the English have 
a soul-saving service — if they want it ? We may think 
them benighted, not alive to their own true interest ; 
but then they may think the same of us for maintain- 
ing a protective tariff, or a weather-bureau, or a fish- 
hatchery. It is a world in which opinions differ, and 
it was to make such a world habitable in peace that re- 
publicanism — the rule of the majority under the forms 
of law — was invented. But if a people want a king, 
or a crown prince, or an archbishop, is not the ques- 
tion of his "utility" and his income their business 
and no one else's ? How much ought a king or a duke 
to receive? Or a president, a judge, a school-master? 
Who can tell better in each case than the people that 
foot the bills? Can we justly apply the name "rob- 
ber" to the man who, in a law-governed country, is 
the legal beneficiary of his country's laws and institu- 
tions? Many people think that every protected man- 
ufacturer is a robber ; others think the same of every 
capitalist, or of the man who holds real estate for a 
rise in value. But is the name correctly applied in 
their cases? If so, where are we to stop? Why is 
not anybody a robber who happens to have land or 
other property which somebody else thinks is more 
than enough ? 

How much land or money or salary may a man 
have before he begins to be a robber ? We cannot 
evade the logic : If the Prince of Wales or the Arch- 
bishop of Canterbury is a robber, then we are all rob- 
bers who dwell on the hither side of communism. 
Why then use an opprobrious name and claim for it 
the merit of truthful plain-speaking ? To my mind that 
is not calling a spade a spade, but it is calling a spade 
a bowie-knife or a burglar's jimmy. 

And then, as to the contention that the European 
monarchies hate us and would destroy us if they could, 
— where is the evidence of this? It is true that after 
Waterloo a number of absolute monarchs, imagining 
that democracy meant a continuation of the revolu- 
tionary and Napoleonic era, that is, turbulence and 
aggressive war, set their faces sternly against it, 
and drew upon themselves the memorable and pa- 
triotic warning-notice of President Monroe. But they 
soon saw that they were battling against the ocean, 
and that the only way to deal with democracy was to 
embrace it. The soul of the Revolution went march- 
ing on, and to-day, in the form of constitutionalism, 
democracy has leavened the whole lump in Western 
Europe, captured Australia and the bulk of Africa, 
and made large inroads in Asia. Why should not we 
republicans possess our souls in peace, glad to see the 
stars in their courses fight our battle, and even get- 
ting a measure of solemn amusement, now and then, 
as we see the " monarchs " tumble over each other in 
their race for the favor of the dear people. I doubt if 
there is a king in the world at the present time who 
feels himself the less secure because of the existence 
of republics. They have learned to rely upon the 
honest monarchical sentiment of their subjects. Why 
did not Bismarck refuse to evacuate Paris unless the 
French put in another king ? Witness the present cor- 
dial relations between Russia and France, and be- 
tween Russia and the United States. Consider the 
solicitude of Wilhelm II. for the independence of the 
Transvaal. Look at Switzerland — safe and solid as 
her Alps, and universally respected. And not the 
least factor in her safety and the respect she enjoys is 
her habit of attending pretty closely to her own busi- 

To me it is the most incomprehensible proposi- 
tion in the world that Europe is our natural enemy 
and South America our natural friend. Does the mere 
fact that the governments south of us call themselves 
republics, though many of them have yet to learn the 
A B C of republicanism, viz., peaceable acceptance of 
the will of the majority, — does this one fact count for 
more than all the ties of blood, of common language, 
traditions, laws, literature, religion, of commercial, 
intellectual, and artistic intercourse, that bind us to 
Europe? It seems to me that every nation in the 



world is our natural friend, but pre-eminently the na- 
tions of Germanic Europe. 

If I were despatching this article from a German 
city to an ordinary newspaper at home, I should con- 
fidently expect in these days that many a reader would 
drop it unfinished with the remark : Another Ameri- 
can professor corrupted by residence in Europe. Bet- 
ter stay there if he likes it so well ! — From the clien- 
tage of The Open Court I do not so much fear this 
funny martyrdom ; and yet it may be well enough to 
say that I have not been debauched by "monarchy." 
I am sound on the form, am not a British sympathiser, 
and have had no money from the Cobden Club. And 
I am coming back. So far as this article is concerned, 
I have tried to write in a perfectly dispassionate and 
scientific temper, solely in the interest of truth. Un- 
derneath that, however, I have really written out of 
the deep love I bear my country. It is precisely be- 
cause I am so good a democrat, because I have such 
loyal pride in my country, that I cannot bear to think 
of its going wrong, — confounding shadows with sub- 
stance and names with things. I hate to hear my 
countrymen, in and out of responsible office, talking 
as if they had been asleep since the Congress of Vi- 
enna. It makes one feel as if they might next pro- 
pose to make the Armenian atrocities the occasion of 
an American crusade for the capture of Jerusalem. I 
admit that I have not any of the time believed the 
danger of war to be very great. But until the Com- 
mission reports, the danger cannot be said to be alto- 
gether past. So long as this is the case, and so long 
as highly intelligent men can take the view which 
Professor Cope takes of American duty and destiny, 
it is pertinent to ask coldly and calmly just what we 
should gain for republican institutions in the Western 
hemisphere if we went to war with Great Britain. As- 
sume the fullest measure of success on our part which 
any imagination can dream of. 

The net result in South America could hardly be 
more than that a few thousand Englishmen, nursed in 
the traditions of democracy, would be compelled to 
leave their homes or else to submit to an offensive 
pseudo-republican government. We should of course 
be obliged by the logic of war to invade Canada, a 
friendly country that has done us no wrong and has 
no interest in the Venezuelan boundary; a country in- 
habited by a people as free and as democratic as we 
are. I assume that if we were in earnest and united, 
the Canadians could not stand up against us. We 
should then fill their land with havoc and mourning, 
capture their cities, subvert their institutions, excite 
throughout half a continent a universal and inextin- 
guishable hatred of ourselves and of our flag, and thus 
acquire a territory which would be ungovernable un- 
der our system. We should have to govern it by 

military despotism. And all this we should be doing 
in order to promote the interests of republican institu- 
tions in the Western hemisphere ; doing in the name 
of the doctrine which asserts the right of every people 
to manage its own affairs in its own way. Could the 
arch- enemy of mankind, who is also, as we believe, 
the arch-enemy of republicanism, imagine in his wild- 
est flight of cynicism a worse adaptation of means to 
ends ? 


The exchange of thought that took place among 
the nations of the Roman Empire produced the need 
of a new religion which found its satisfaction in that 
great spiritual movement which is known by the 
name of Christianity. The idea of immortality became 
more and more accepted by the masses of the people; 
but there were many to whom it was no welcome 
news, for it served only to enhance the fears of man's 
fate after death. The Egyptians' dread of judgment in 
the nether world, the Jews' horror of Gehenna, the Hin- 
dus' longing for an escape from future sufferings, were 
now added to the Greek notionsof Hades, and rendered 
them more terrible than before. The descriptions of 
Tartarus which we find in Homer's Iliad and in He- 
siod's Theogony began to be believed in more seriously 
than ever. Plato's dualistic conception of the soul 
created in the hearts of many noble men a longing for 
death as a release from the ills that in this material 
existence flesh is heir to, but intensified, at the same 
time, in others the expectations of the sufferings be- 
yond. These tendencies were criticised by philoso- 
phers and ridiculed by witty authors. Thus we read 
in the Epigrams of Callimachus (No. xxiv) : 

" Cleombrot,' he of Ambracia, took leave of the sun in the heavens: 
Leapt from a vi^all in the hope || sooner to reach the Beyond ; 

Not that he e'er had encountered an ill that made life to him 
hateful ; 
Only because he had read | Plato's grand book on the soul."^ 

And Lucian tells the story of Peregrinus, surnamed 
Proteus, who after various adventures became a con- 
vert to Christianity. He would have been forgotten 
and his name would never have been mentioned in 
history but for the fact that in the presence of a great 
crowd at the Olympian festivals he burned himself to 
death on a big pile of wood. These were symptoms 
which illustrated the religious zeal of the people and 
characterised the unrest of the times. Further Plutarch 
tells us in his ATorals that the superstitious are chas- 

ICIeombrotus may have been the same disciple of Socrates who is men- 
tioned in Pbaedo H., p. 59, c. This strange case of suicide is alluded to by 
St, Augustine in de Civ. Dei, I., 22. 

2 Translated in the original metre. 



tised by "their own imagination of an anguish that 
will never cease." He says : 

' ' Wide open stand the deep gates of the Hades that they fable, 
and there stretches a vista of rivers of fire and Stygian cliffs ; and 
all is canopied with a darkness full of fantasms, of spectres threat- 
ening us with terrible faces and uttering pitiful cries." 

Mr. F. C. Conybeare, in his Monuments of Early 
Christianity, says, concerning the belief in hell : 

"We make a mistake if we think that this awful shadow was 
not cast across the human mind long before the birth of Chris- 
tianity. On the contrary, it is a survival from the most primitive 
stage of our intellectual and moral development. The mysteries 
of the old Greek and Roman worlds were intended as modes of 
propitiation and atonement, by which to escape from those all- 
besetting terrors, and Jesus, the Messiah, was the last and the best 
of the XvTiipioi Seal of the redeeming gods. In the dread of death 
and in the belief in the eternal fiie of hell, which pervaded men's 
minds, a few philosophers excepted, Christianity had a fot'ni 
d'appui, without availing itself of which it would not have made a 
single step towards the conquest of men's minds." 

When the myths of the West were compared with 
the religions of the East, the ancient pagan beliefs 
were not abandoned, but transformed. Hesiod tells us 
in the Theogony of the terrible struggle between Zeus 
and the Titans, and St. Peter, when speaking in his 
second letter of the revolution of the angels that sinned, 
says that "God sent them down to Tartarus." The 
expression however is obliterated in the version of 
King James, for the word raprapoaaas (having hurled 
them to Tartarus) is translated "sent them down to 

Further we read in the Theogony of the battle be- 
tween the monster Typhoeus and Zeus : 

"When Zeus had driven the Titans out from Heaven, huge 
Barth bare her youngest born son, Typhoeus, . . . whose hands, 
indeed, are fit for deeds on account of their strength. . . . On his 
shoulders there were one hundred heads of a serpent, of a fierce 
dragon, playing with dusky tongues. From the eyes in his won- 
drous heads fire struggled beneath the brows. From his terrible 
mouths voices were sending forth every kind of sound ineffable, — 
the bellowing of a bull, the roar of a lion, the barking of whelps, 
and the hiss of a serpent. The huge monster would have reigned 
over mortals unless the sire of gods and men had quickly observed 
him. Harshly he thundered, and heavily and terribly the earth 
re-echoed around. Beneath Jove's immortal feet vast Olympus 
trembled, and the earth groaned. Heaven and sea were boiling. 
Pluto trembled, monarch of the dead. The Titans in Tartarus 
trembled also, but Jove smote Typhoeus and scorched all the 
wondrous heads of the terrible monster. When at last the mon- 
ster was quelled, smitten with blows, it fell down lame, and Zeus 
hurled him into wide Tartarus." 

This description reminds us of passages in the New 
Testament. We read, for instance, in Revelation, 
xii., 7-9 : 

"And there was war in Heaven. Michael and his angels 
fought against the dragon ; and the dragon fought and his angels ; 
and prevailed not ; neither was their place found any more in 
Heaven. And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent 

called the Devil and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world ; he 
was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with 

Thus the old Greek demons merely changed names 
and reappeared in new personalities. In this shape 
they were embodied into the canonical books of the 
New Testament and became the integral part of the 
new religion, which at that time began to conquer the 
world. p. c. 



The Potentate's Present. 

A POOR widow chanced to find opportunity to do a 
potentate a favor. The potentate, overjoyed to be re- 
lieved of his dilemma (which was only a small matter 
of a pin wanting to his sarraband) told the poor widow 
to name what reward she desired. The woman after 
a moment's reflexion said that above all else in the 
world she desired a canary-bird. "For," said she, 
"I had one that died and I miss its carolling sorely." 

"Say no more," exclaimed the potentate, "I will 
see that your desires are more than amply gratified." 

The next day His Majesty's prime minister was 
called into the serene presence and directed to pro- 
cure forthwith and take to the widow, not a canary- 
bird, but an elephant. 

At which all the courtiers made obeisance and cried 
with one voice that of all monarchs that potentate was 
the most amiable and generous. 

But if they thought him possessed of these excel- 
lent traits it was more than the poor widow did. "For 
what," said she, "shall I do with so big a beast? 
Will I hang him in a cage in my front room ? Will 
he sing to me and chirp and carol ?" 

Just then the elephant trumpeted loudly. 

"There!" said the prime minister. "If it is a 
song you desire, what could exceed that for noise ?" 

"Alas ! kind sir," said the widow piteously, her eyes 
full of tears, "it may be, and I am sure is a very fair 
quality of noise, but it is not the kind of noise I ad- 
mire. I chanced to do my lord a trifling service which 
might have been repaid with a ' thank ye kindly,' but 
he chose to offer me a choice of gifts and I asked a 
bird. It is not bulk I want but beaut)^, and not noise 
but a song. So take your beast and be gone." 

Then the prime minister and all the courtiers and 
after (when the tale was told him) the potentate said, 
"what base ingratitude thus to reject so great a re- 

But the widow was pleased enough to be rid of the 
beast, and said to a neighbor of hers that if this was 
generosity from thenceforth she should beware how 
she furnished pins for a potentate's sarraband, how 
great soever his extremity might be. 






To the Editor of the Open Court: 

To say that my "view of God is in Christian dogmatology,' 
is not a refutation of my argument in regard to the responsibility 
of God. Neither is the presentation of your idea of God's re- 
sponsibility a true and logical defence of your position which 
teaches that " we are all builders of our own fate, and we must be 
our own saviours." It is incumbent upon you to show by cor- 
roborative testimony that mankind have full control of every fac- 
tor in the combinations which control their actions for weal or 
woe, and that all human action is due solely to individual effort, 
environments having no power over organisms to conquer them. 
You must prove that sober, honest, industrious men never have to 
face poverty; that energetic business men who start in with cour- 
age, hope, and zeal, and a fair amount of capital, never become 
bankrupt ; that people who do the best they can to conform to 
the rules of health never get sick ; that passengers both on sea and 
land who suffer loss of life and property, always sow to their own 
disaster, that they are not the helpless victims of the carelessness 
of others who are in charge ; that people who get burned to death 
in hotels and other buildings always start the fire which consumes 
them ; that when a father, mother, son, or daughter commits a 
crime or is brought to shame, no other member of the family suf- 
fers ; that when politicians work hard for office, they never get 
defeated ; that slaves place themselves in bondage ; that young 
men who study hard to qualify themselves to obtain lucrative po- 
sitions, always get them ; that all mankind have the necessary 
ability, which godlike sowers and reapers ought to have, to fore- 
see and foreknow and to change the combination of the circum- 
stances which often lord it over them ; that mankind always have 
moral courage to ref ase to be led astray ; that kindness never 
reaps imposition, that the virtuous are always happy and the 
vicious are always miserable ; that a farmer controls every factor 
in the combination which will bring him a good harvest ; that 
every business and workingman is not dependent upon other fac- 
tors than themselves for success ; that man is never defeated in 
getting anything that he wishes and strives for ; that each polit- 
ical party can, at the same time, elect its own president ; that 
when two nations are at war both can be victorious by force of 
arms. I might still go on enumerating in like manner from the 
facts of the domain in which we live and move. What are the 
empty assumptions of the teachers of religions against this great 
array of indisputable, scientific evidence ? 

Your position implies that all mankind have full knowledge 
and control of every natural law, or cause ; that they are the pri- 
mary drivers, not the driven. You view mankind the same as if 
you were to see a lot of spinning and weaving-machines at work 
and then say that they are self-acting. You look at the stream, 
but you neglect to take the source into consideration. You de- 
stroy the connecting link between God and man, when by pure 
science it can be clearly shown that the power which evolves can- 
not be separated from the form evolved ; neither can there be any 
progress, or evolution unless there is involution from the primary 
source — the foundation-stone which has been rejected by all phi- 
losophers of a negative type. Your position implies, also, that 
mankind are a lot of self-imposed idiots and imbeciles, who de- 
sire misery instead of happiness, sickness instead of health, pov- 
erty instead of wealth, ignorance instead of wisdom, and evil in- 
stead of good. If I looked upon poor, suffering humanity as the 
cause of all their evil and suffering, I would despair of their de- 
liverance, because like can only beget like, but as I know that the 
leaven of evolution within them is able to lift them up from sin 
and suffering, I rejoice with exceeding great joy. 

There will not be a new Christianity, because Christianity is 
not science. New types must have new names. A whale cannot 
be consistently called a moUusk. All religions are transient su- 
perstitions. The parables of the mustard-seed and the leaven 
were not spoken in reference to Christianity, — a formulation of 
the apostles— but to the kingdom of God. The Gospel of Jesus is 
not Christianity. This will be proved later. The time has come 
to make a divide. As The Open Court is set for progress, and 
truth for authority, it has nothing to lose, but much to gain — as 
Mr, Hegeler has said, ' ' the truth is sure to prevail." 

"Man, every single individual, and also the whole of man- 
kind, is a part of God." This is true as regards matter ; but it is 
not true in regard to power, ingenuity, form, godhood, and infin- 
ity. Man is not identical with God. Man cannot reverse the or- 
der of his being nor the order of his growth, career, or destiny. 
Cannot raise himself up after he has returned to dust. God can 
do all these. We are not responsible because we are identical 
with God, but because we must be so held for the good of all. 
All the lower animals are so held. We are obliged to punish them 
if they transgress. Punishment is not retributive justice as reli- 
gions teach, but an apposition of nature. Vicious organisms need 
restraining, just as fish need water to swim in. If the dogma of 
sow and reap were true, the good ought not suffer. But they do 
suffer just as much as criminals do, only in other forms. My po- 
sition is not dualistic because I claim that forms are not altogether 
identical with God. It is purely monistic. Forceful matter (not 
force and matter) is able to combine and evolve all the forms that 
we see. God is simply forceful matter. As the chameleon can 
change its hue, yet the hues are not identical with the chameleon 
as regards power, knowledge, form, and control, so God is lord in 
all his works— all forms and conditions being subject to him. 

Reasoning from the primary source of forms, God cannot be 
otherwise. Our true relation to God is the same as that of mill- 
machinery to the engine which drives it, with the exception that 
the engine did not evolve and arrange the machinery. Where 
God's evolution is not, all the efforts on the part of mankind for 
progress are vain. Though hand join with hand, as the labor re- 
formers have done, human efforts cannot go ahead of natural evo- 
lution. We are not here to mix the cups which we have to drink ; 
we have to drink the cups which the Father mixes for us. The 
humble attitude of the Nazarene is the true one for us to assume. 

John Maddock. 

[We publish Mr. Haddock's letter without entering into the 
various problems which he touches upon, for there is no need of 
refuting them. We agree with many of his statements and feel 
obliged only to present an explanation of what we mean when we 
say that we are responsible for our fate. 

What are we ? We, i. e. , every one of us, are an organism of a 
definite character with peculiar dispositions and impulses. This 
idea of ourselves, however, is an abstraction, as much so as all 
ideas are abstractions ; for we do not and cannot exist in isola- 

When we speak of our planet, earth, we must not forget that 
it belongs to the sun, and that the character of the earth, the 
gravity of its masses, its vegetation and animal life, depend upon 
the sun, and the sun in all its peculiarities is a determinant factor 
and an important part of the suchness of the earth. Were we to 
make an inventory of ourselves, we should find that we had to re- 
fer to the whole world of which we are a part. And when we ask 
the question. Whence do we come and whither do we fare ? we 
can trace the influences that shaped us in the conditions of our 
life — in our parents and in the evolution of thought that preceded 
us ; we are the continuance of prior life, and if you ask, where is 
that prior life ? the answer cannot be that it disappeared into 
nothing, but "Here it is ; it is we." 





Our life began with the origin of life on earth ; nay, it began 
with the origin of our solar system, and even with the origin of 
the Milky Way of which our solar system is a part. The impulse 
that animated the rotation of the nebula from which sun and 
earth were differentiated, continues in our life, not as the sole 
feature of our being, but as one that was there from the begin- 
ning, or rather from eternity. We were present when the solar 
system was framed, and we have no right to complain about it if 
it does not please us ; we have a right to repent, and the desire 
may originate that we should undo what we did in former exis- 
tences ; but we have to bear all the consequences. Throughout 
the evolution of life we continued existence under definite condi- 
tions. It is of no account whether or not parents are conscious of 
the responsibility of extending their existence in new generations ; 
they are held responsible ; and the new generation reaps what the 
old one sowed by its deeds. 

He who ventures out on the sea on a poor craft that cannot 
stand the storm is responsible if the storm actually comes. That 
we take our chances in almost all the walks of life, which in in- 
numerable cases turn out well, does not relieve us of the responsi- 
bilities when running risks. 

In this sense we are responsible for our fates and reap the 
fruits of our deeds ; and in making this statement, I am aware of 
the fact, not only that we frequently are the helpless victims of 
the conditions under which we choose to continue in the course of 
life, but also that thoughtlessness or ignorance prevents us from 
recognising the consequences of our deeds. Every birth involves 
a death ; while every evil deed and every error are the seeds of 
misery. This helplessness, in extraordinary cases, imposes the 
duty of assistance upon others. The solidarity of the interests of 
life implies that, for our own sake, we must help one another. 

I grant that if by " ourselves " we understand our existence 
cut loose from its pre-existence, as something that rose into being 
from nothing and will again disappear into nothing, we may re- 
gard ourselves as a fortuitous product of circumstances, and are 
irresponsible in every respect. — Ed.] 


Swami Vivekananda has written a booklet of eight chapters 
(fifty-four pages) on the A'ai-mn Yoga, which is published by Bren- 
tano (31 Union Square, New York) for $1 00. Other lectures on 
the Vedanta philosophy and other subjects, such as "The Hindu 
Conception of God," "The Ideal of Universal Religion," "The 
Cosmos," and " Bhakti Yoga," can be had for ten cents per copy. 

We are in receipt of a three-volume work on the life of the 
Rt. Rev. Ogino Dokuon by the Rev. Zitsuzen Ashitsu, the same 
who three years ago visited Chicago as a member of the Parlia- 
ment of Religions and a representative of the Tendai sect. The 
book before us is written in Chinese and prefaced in Japanese. 
It is a tribute of Mr. Ashitsu's to his teacher, who played a very 
important part in the later religious history of Japan. 

The Rt. Rev. Ogino Dokuon was born at the village of Yama- 
saka, Kojima-G6ri, of the province of Bizen in Japan in July, 
1819. At thirteen he became a Buddhist monk and studied the 
Chinese classics under Hoashi Banri ; at twenty-three he went to 
Kyoto and renewed his study of the doctrines of the Dhyana sect 
under the guidance of the head abbot, Taisetzu, of the monastery 
of Shokokuji in Kyoto, and, after finishing his religious studies, 
he dwelt in the same monastery. During the fifty years of his 
religious life he was one of the most indefatigable and diligent 
workers for his religion. At the time of the great revolution in 
1863 there arose in Japan a severe repudiation of Buddhism, and 
the people mercilessly attacked the Buddhist monks. The Rev. 
Ogino had bravely met his opponents and at last he was able to 
reinstate the fallen power of his religion. In 1872 he was ap- 

pointed president of the Daikyoin and became the archbishop. 
He died on the loth of August, 1895, at the age of seventy-six. 
This is only an outline of his life ; a minute description of the 
same m\\ be found in the Rev. Mr. Ashitsu's "Tai-KoGo-Roku." 

We are also in receipt of another book by the Rev. Zitsuzen 
Ashitsu, on "the real body (or personality) of Amitabha, " in 
which the nature of omnipresent and eternal Buddhahood is dis- 

On the platform of the Religious Parliament the Rev. Ashitsu 
was distinguished not only by his appearance in a tasteful robe, 
but also and mainly by his thoughtful face ; and the readers of 
T/te Monist will remember his article, " The Fundamental Teach- 
ings of Buddhism," in Vol. IV., No. 2, of The Monist. 


art edition. Printed and illustrated in Japan. Quaint and odd. Rice paper, 
tied in silk. Price. 75 cents. 

GOETHE AND SCHILLER'S XENIONS. Selected and translated by 
Paui Cants. Printed in album shape on heavy paper; edges all gold. Pages, 
162. Price. Si.oo. 

LOVERS THREE THOUSAND YEARS AGO. As indicated by the Song 
of Solonjon By the Rev. T. A. Good-win, D. D. Printed on heavy Enfield 
paper, gilt top, uncut edges, and stiff, cream-colored covers. Pages, 41. Price, 

THE PROPHETS OF ISRAEL. Popular Sketches from Old Testament 
History. By Pfof. Carl Heinrick Cernill. Frontispiece, Michael Angelo's 
Moses. Artistically bound in red, with the Hebrew title stamped on the cover 
in gold ; laid paper; uncut edges. Pages, 210. Price, Si. 00. 

THE LOST MANUSCRIPT. A Novel. By Gustav Freytag. Authorised 
translation from the sixteenth German edition, with a special motto by the 
author. Edition de luxe. Two volumes, $4.00. In one volume, simpler edi- 
tion, cloth, Si. 00. 

Prof. Richard Garbe. Laid paper. Veg. parch, binding. Gilt top. Pages, 
gG. Price, 75 cents. 

HOMILIES OF SCIENCE. By Dr, Paul Carus. Pages. 310. Cloth, gilt 
top, 81.50. 

TRUTH IN FICTION. Twelve Tales with a Moral. By the Same. Laid- 

paper, white and gold binding, gilt edges. Pages, 128. Price, Si. 00. 



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NOTES 4870 

The Open Court. 



No, 450. (Vol. X.— 15.) 

CHICAGO, APRIL 9, 1896. 

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" It is not prudent to be in the right too 
soon, nor to be in the right against everybody 
else. And yet it sometimes happens that after 
a certain lapse of time, greater or lesser, you 
will find that one of those truths which you had 
kept to yourself as premature, but which has 
got abroad in spite of your teeth, has become 
the most common-place thing imaginable. 

—Alfkonse Karr. 

One purpose of these articles is to explain how un- 
founded are the objections of many excellent Chris- 
tians to Secular instruction in state, public, or board 
schools. The Secular is distinct from theology — which 
it neither ignores, assails, nor denies. The Secular is 
as separate from the Church as land from the ocean. 
And what nobody seems to discern is that the Secular 
is quite distinct from Secularism. The Secular is a 
mode of instruction — Secularism is a code of conduct. 
Secularism does conflict with theology ; Secularist 
teaching would, but Secular instruction does not. 

Persuaded as I am that lack of consideration for 
the convictions of the reader creates an impediment 
in the way of his agreement with the writer, and even 
disinclines him to examine what is put before him — 
yet some of these pages may be open to this objec- 
tion. If so, it is owing to want of thought or want of 
art in statement — and no part of intention in the au- 

He would have dififidence in expressing, as he does 
in these pages, his dissent from the opinions of many 
Christian advocates, for whose character and convic- 
tions he has great respect, and for some even affec- 
tion — did he not perceive that few have any diffidence 
or reservation (save in one or two exalted instances^) 
in maintaining their views and dissenting from his. 

Open thought, which in these articles is brought 
under the reader's notice — sometimes called "self- 
thought," or " free thought," or " original thought, " 
the opposite of conventional second-hand thought — 
which is all that the custom-ridden mass of mankind 
is addicted to. 

Open thought has three stages : 

The first stage is that in which the right to think 
independently is insisted on ; and the free action of 
ppinion — so formed — is maintained. Conscious power 

J Of whom the greatest is Mr. Gladstone, 

thus acquired satisfies the pride of some : others limit 
its exercise from prudence. Interests, which would 
be jeopardised by applying independent thought to 
received opinion, keep more silent, and thus many 
never pass from this stage. 

The second stage is that in which the right of self- 
thought is applied to the criticism of theology, with a 
view to clear the way for life according to reason. 
This is not the work of a day or year, but is so pro- 
longed that clearing the way becomes as it were a pro- 
fession, and is at length pursued as an end instead of 
a means. Disputation becomes a passion and the 
higher state of life, of which criticism is the necessary 
precursor, is lost sight of, and many remain at this 
stage when it is reached and go no further. 

The third stage is that where ethical motives of 
conduct apart from Christianity are vindicated for the 
guidance of those who are indifferent to, or who re- 
ject orthodox theology. This is Secularism whose 
range is illimitable. It begins where free thought usu- 
ally ends, and constitutes a new form of constructive 
thought, whose principles and policy are quite differ- 
ent to those acted upon in the preceding stages. Con- 
troversy concerns itself with what is. Secularism with 
what ought to be. 

The Question Stated. 

" Look forward — not backward ; 
Look up — not down ; 
Look around : 
Lend a hand." 1 

— Edward Everett Hale, D. D. 

Where a monarchy is master inquiry is apt to be 
a disturbing element, and though exercised in the in- 
terest of the commonwealth it is none the less re- 
sented. Where the priest is master inquiry is sharply 
prohibited. The priest represents a spiritual monarchy 
in which the tenets of belief are fixed, assumed to be 
infallible and to be prescribed by deity. Thus the 
priest regards inquiry as proceeding from an imperti- 
nent distrust, to which he is not reconciled on being 
assured that it is undertaken in the interests of truth. 
Thus the king denounces inquiry as sedition, and the 
priest as sin. In the end the inquirer finds himself an 

iDr. Hale did not popularise these energetic maxims of earnestness in 
the connexion in which they are here used; but their wisdom is of general 




alien in State and Church, and laws are made against 
his life, his liberty, property, and veracity. ^ 

Thus from the time when monarch and priest first 
set up their pretensions in the world, the inquiring 
mind has had small encouragement. When Protes- 
tantism came it merely conceded inquiry under direc- 
tion, and only so far as it tended to confirm its own 
anti-papal tenets. But when inquiry claimed to be 
independent, unfettered, uncontrolled, in fact to be 
free inquiry : then Papist, Lutheran, and Dissenter, 
alike regarded it as dangerous, and stigmatised it by 
every term calculated to deter or dissuade people 
from it. 

But though this combined defamation of inquiry 
set many against it, it did not intimidate it entirely. 
There arose independent thinkers who held that un- 
fettered investigation was the discoverer of truth and 
dangerous to error only, and the freer it was the more 
effective it must be. 

Still timorous-minded persons remained suspicious 
of free thought. At its best they found it involved 
conflict with false opinion, and conflict to those with- 
out aspiration or conscience, is disquieting ; and where 
impartial investigation interfered with personal inter- 
ests it was opposed. No one could enter on the search 
for truth but he found the path obstructed by theolo- 
gical errors and interdictions. Having taken the side 
of truth, all who were loyal to it, were bound like Bun- 
yan's Pilgrim to withstand the Apollyons who opposed 
it, and a combat began which lasted for centuries, and 
is not yet ended. But though theology was always in 
power, men of courage at length established the right 
of free inquiry, and established also a free press for 
the publication of the results arrived at. These rights 
were so indispensable for progress and were so long 
resisted, that generations fought for them as ends in 
themselves. Thus there grew up, as in military affairs, 
a class whose profession was destruction, and free 
thinkers came to be regarded as negationists. When 
I came into the field the combat was raging. Richard 
Carlile had not long been liberated from successive 
imprisonments of more than nine years duration in all. 
Charles Southwell was in Bristol gaol. Before his 
sentence had half expired I was in Gloucester gaol. 
George Adams was there ; Mrs. Harriet Adams was 
committed for trial from Cheltenham. Matilda Roalfe, 
Thomas Finlay, Thomas Paterson, and others were 
incarcerated in Scotland. Robert Buchanan and Lloyd 
Jones, two social missionaries — colleagues of my own 
—only escaped imprisonment by swearing they be- 
lieved what they did not believe : an act I refused to 
imitate, and no mean inconvenience has resulted to 

iWhen martyrdoms and imprisonments ceased, disabling laws remained 
which imposed the Christian oath on all who appealed to the courts, and any 
one who had the pride of veracity and declined so to swear, were denied pro- 
tection tor property, or credence of their word, 

me from it. I took part in the vindication of the free 
publicity of opinion until it was practically conceded. 

At the time when I was arrested in 1842, the Chel- 
tenham magistrates who were angered at defiant re- 
marks I made, had the power (and used it) of com- 
mitting me to the Quarter Sessions as a "felon," where 
the same justices could resent penally what I had 
said to them. On representations I made to Parlia- 
ment — through my friend John Arthur Roebuck and 
others — Sir James Graham caused a Bill to be passed 
which removed trials for opinion to the Assizes. I 
was the first person tried under this act. Thus for the 
first time heresy was ensured a dispassionate trial and 
was no longer subject to the jurisdiction of local preju- 
dice and personal magisterial resentment. 

When, however, facts of outrage were no longer 
possible against the adherents of free thought. Chris- 
tians, some from fairness, and others from necessity, 
began to reason with them and asked: "Now you 
have established your claim to be heard. What have 
you to say ? " The reply I proposed was Secularism — 
a form of opinion relating to the duty of this life which 
substituted the piety of useful men for the usefulness 
of piety. 


A Study in the History of Religion. 


Out of all the rack and ruin of Indian antiquity, 
the most momentous objects, which the investigator 
can hope to render comprehensible to the modern 
reader, are the great religions of ancient India. At 
their head stands the religion embodied in the literature 
of the Veda — a belief closely related to the ancient reli- 
gions of the principal European peoples, but retaining 
in a clearer manner than they the marks of distant pre- 
historic stages, the traces of mighty commotions in 
which man's religious thought and feeling laboriously 
struggled forth from the crude confusion of primitive 
ages to nobler and more elevated forms. The religion 
of the Veda is in turn replaced by the teaching of 
Buddha, — the sternly practical religion of conquering 
shepherd-chieftains and their priests, by the world- 
renouncing doctrine of salvation-seeking monks. Far- 
reaching analogies interweave the ideals, for which the 
followers of the Shakya's son forsook their homes for 
a life of wandering, with thoughts evolved in the 
Western world, especially in Greece. It seems prac- 
ticable to reduce this development of the religious na- 
ture, proceeding as it did in parallel directions among 
peoples so widely separated, to a single general for- 
mula, that would set forth the agreement of the vari- 
ous powerful impulses working among them. 

1 Authorised translation from the Deutsche Rundschau by O, W. Weyer. 



It will, I trust, be permitted a fellow worker in the 
exploration of these domains, to describe and to ap- 
praise the value of the attempts which science has 
made and is yet making to interpret these primeval 
monuments of human searching, longing, hoping, and 
to assign to them their proper place in history. But 
dare he make the attempt to conjure forth the figures 
themselves of that prehistoric world, those rare one's 
of silver, and with them the more numerous throng of 
inferior metal : can he succeed in fixing them, even 
though he leave the outlines somewhat doubtful and 
obscure ? 

The gods and myths of earliest India became ac- 
cessible to research as soon as it possessed itself of 
the Rig-Veda, a collection of more than a thousand 
hymns — the great majority of them sacrificial hymns. 
I have described in a former series of articles in this 
magazine,^ how the knowledge of the Rig-Veda was 
acquired, and how by hard but rapid philological work 
its obscurities were surely and steadily overcome. A 
feeling of awe was involuntarily felt on reading those 
poems, the antiquity of whose language loomed far 
beyond the old Sanskrit of even the law-book of Manu, 
or of the great Indian epics. A sensation, as of being 
led back into the deepest past of our own Teutonic an- 
cestors, as of catching faint traces of their heart-beats 
in the first dawn of their antiquity, was quite generally 
felt, as those gods of a blood-related people arose be- 
fore us ; Agni, fire, the genial guest of human habita- 
tions ; Indra, the thundering dragon-slayer, who uses 
his boundless strength to free the waters from their 
prison ; Varuna, in whom it was believed the all-em- 
bracing heavens were personified, the observer and 
avenger of even the most hidden sins ; Ushas, the 
lovely morning-blush, the dawn, who usurps the sway 
of her sister, the Night, and, with a herd of ruddy 
cattle in her train traverses the firmament over, lavish- 
ing benefits and blessings. 

It so happened, in the progress of science, that the 
first glances, which fell upon these apparitions of the 
gods, starting up thus suddenly from the midst of a 
desolated field, were the glances of comparative phi- 
lologists : the same savants, who, leaping from one 
triumph to another, were at that very time engrossed 
with the work of illuminating the Greek, Latin, and 
Germanic inflexions with the light coming from the 
Sanskrit. What could be more natural than that those 
investigators should apply to mythology the same crit- 
ical method of comparison which had borne such rich 
and abundant fruits in Grammar? that they should 
seek to establish between the divinities of the Veda 
and those of ancient Europe the same kinship, the 

1 The Open Court, Nos. 79, 84, 85, 86, for the year i88g. These articles, en- 
titled "The Study of Sanskrit." appeared afterward in book-form in Epitomes 
of Three Sciences. Chicago : The Open Court Publishing Co. Cloth, 75 cents. 

same identity of origin, as existed between certain 
forms of Indian and Greek verbs, for example between 
the Indian daddmi and the Greek didomi, both of which 
mean "I give"? And so, there grew up — one might 
say, as a branch of comparative philology — a compar- 
ative mythology, which uniformly placed the philolo- 
gical points of view foremost ; and which placed spe- 
cial reliance upon the names of the divinities or de- 
mons, and then sought to establish their primal na- 
tures by means of an etymological treatment of these 

In the pursuit of this course, as between the Veda 
and the European traditions, the leading part fell nat- 
urally enough to the former. For the Veda had the 
benefit of all that prestige which the Sanskrit then 
enjoyed in philological matters, of being the chiefest 
witness as to what was the first form and the first 
meaning of words. Why the word daughter should be 
thy gat er in Greek and Tochter in German, neither the 
Greek nor the German language could explain. But 
the Sanskrit did seem able to explain it. The history 
of the Sanskrit word for daughter seemed written on 
its very front. Since this word fell under the root duh 
(to milk), it seemed obvious that the daughter was 
originally the milker — a domestic idyl from remotest 
antiquity. And at length there was a sort of conviction, 
trailing at the hand of an etymology dominated by the 
Sanskrit, that we could, to repeat an expression of 
Max Muller's, reach back into regions of the past so 
far as to believe ourselves listening to the very voices 
of the earth-born sons of Manu. 

It was in fact unavoidable, that this scientific art, 
whilst pursuing its labors with such ardor, such rich 
hopes, such confidence, should at the same time ex- 
perience within itself the calling and the capacity, to 
expound, with the help of a catalogue of Sanskrit 
roots, the primal meaning of the hitherto mysterious 
divinities of Homer, of ancient Italy, and of the Edda. 
And it must be admitted, too, that a few of these com- 
parisons and elaborations of the names of the old di- 
vinities really forced themselves upon the mind with 
overpowering conviction, and remain at this day as 
convincing as they were then. 

But with the attempt to press on beyond this very 
scanty store, an approach was ever more closely made 
to a procedure the subjective character of which seri- 
ously endangered the security of the results already 
acquired. From the endless wealth of mythological 
names, of which the Veda is literally full, the sharp 
scent of the investigators hunted out and brought to 
light here and there a word, which, while it may have 
had some small resemblance to a Greek name, still 
occurred but rarely in the Vedic tradition. Or if there 
were no proper noun for the divinity to be found in 
the Vedic, they would fasten upon a mere adjective. 



Or, indeed, instead of a word actually transmitted in 
the Veda, they would now and then upon their own 
responsibility build up a Vedic word as a counterpart 
to the name of a Greek divinity. 

Thus, in a very obscure verse of the Rig- Veda there 
appears a goddess, a female demon, Saranjus, of whose 
nature the Veda reveals next to nothing at all ; it was 
thought that the primitive^ form of the Greek Erinys 
had been found. The name Saranjus, according to its 
derivation from a root sar (to hurry), seems to mean 
"the hurrying one"; and the view was accordingly 
adopted, that she was the personification of the stormy 
thunder-cloud. And when the Greeks speak of Erinys 
as "walking in the mist," of her swinging torches in 
her hands, immediately plain confirmation was therein 
discerned for the proposition that the Erinyes, too, 
sprang from the conception of the thunder-cloud ; their 
torches are the thunder-bolts which strike down the 

The Rig-Veda speaks of a goddess Sarama, a dog, 
who tracks the ruddy cows of the gods to their con- 
cealment when stolen ; her sons, who have also canine 
shapes and appear to play the part of genii of sleep 
and death, are named after their mother Saramejas. 
It was thought that the Greek Hermes and Hermeias 
had been discovered here, the guide of souls into the 
realm of death, the dream-sending god of sleep. And 
here again the same root sar (to hurry) seemed to con- 
duct the mythological interpreter into the realm of the 
agitated atmosphere, just as in the case of Erinys. 
Sarama, "the hurrying one," was explained as the 
wind ; to the fleetness of the wind the dog-form of the 
goddess and her children seemed to correspond, in the 
natural symbolism of the myth. 

But the wind is not the only thing in nature which 
moves hurriedly. And hence other interpretations 
were possible. Sarama, who recovers the treasure of 
ruddy cows lost in the darkness, could she not mean 
the morning-blush, the dawn? And does not her name 
appear to resemble the name of Helena? In that case, 
the story of the Iliad is found again in one of the stand- 
ing themes of the Veda-hymns ; the siege of Troy 
would be but a repetition of the daily siege by the 
martial forces of the sun, of the entrenchments of 
night, where the treasures of light are locked up. 

Besides Helen, there appeared in the Greek a 
whole list of goddesses representing the Indian morn- 
ing, the foremost of which was disclosed in the Vedic 

1 Not " primitive " in the sense that the Greek goddess was derived from 
the Indian, but in the sense that the Indo-European prototype, common alike 
to the Greek and the Indian form, in all essential respects was correctly 
represented in the Indian form. To properly appreciate the equating of the 
names Saranjus and Erinys (so, too, that of Saramejas=Hermeias [Hermes]), 
it is to be observed that the initial .S of Indo-European words, which was re- 
tained in Sanskrit (as also in the Latin and Teutonic), became in the Greek, 
when followed by a vowel, either a mere aspirate or disappeared altogether ; 
thus our seveti (Latin, septem) in Greek is written hepta. 

title of the dawn, Ahana. Here, it was thought, lay 
the germ from which the Greek Athene had sprung, 
the daughter of Zeus, just as in the Veda the dawn 
was called the daughter of Djaus, or Heaven. 

In conclusion, one more of these Indo-Greek com- 
binations may be cited : the one which of them all 
perhaps fared with the best luck. A part of the an- 
cient Indian fire-drill, namely, the stick which was 
kept turning to ignite the wood by its friction, was 
called pramantha. Here was -revealed, so it was 
thought, the nature of the Titan form of Prometheus. 
The friend of mankind — who brought to them, de- 
spite of Zeus, fire, the fountain of all art — seemed 
here to be announced in his original character as a 
divine " rubber of fire," who afterwards brings down 
the flame, which he has himself produced, to the earth. 

It is evident that in nearly all of these combina- 
tions one characteristic regularly recurs : the origin of 
the divine beings, including those which appear most 
unequivocally to represent ethical forces or influences 
active in human culture, is traced back to the powers 
of nature. Erinys was the dark storm-cloud before 
she undertook the office of avenging the misdeeds of 
men. But in the great realm of nature there were 
two regions in which these interpretations of the mean- 
ing of divinities and myths lingered with particular 
predilection : the phenomena of storm and thunder on 
the one hand, and on the other the alternation of light 
and darkness. 

On this point the leanings of investigators sepa- 
rated. The question was much discussed as to which 
of the two classes must have produced the deepest and 
most lasting impressions upon the soul of youthful 
mankind, — those extraordinary, and, as it were, con- 
vulsive commotions which agitate the atmosphere, or 
the calm majesty of the divine powers of light, daily 
recurring with uniform grandeur. 

Adalbert Kuhn was the first among those investi- 
gators who peopled the mythological landscape with 
storm-gods, cloud-nymphs, and demons of lightning. 
He believed that the language of many myths was to 
be interpreted as descriptions of meteorological phe- 
nomena, the details of which — the various motions 
of rising, departing, scattering dark clouds, and of 
brighter little clouds — seemed to have been seized 
and expatiated upon with painful exactitude through 
whole lists of varying phases. According to Max Mul- 
ler, on the other hand, the main theme of the Indo- 
Germanic myths found expression in the words dawn 
and sun. To his poetically attuned imagination the 
ancient poets and thinkers stood revealed as daily des- 
crying in what we call sunrise the mystery of all mys- 
teries. The dawn was to them that unknown land 
from whose impenetrable depths life ever newly flashes 
forth. The dawn opens to the sun her golden gates, 



and whilst her gates thus stand ajar, eyes and hearts 
yearn and struggle to peer beyond the limits of this 
finite world ; the thought of the unending, the undy- 
ing, the divine, awakens in the human soul. But 
whether storm or sunrise, all concurred in the view 
that in the Veda lay the guide which would conduct 
us to the theogony of the Indo-European peoples, — 
that there was here a system of religion to the last de- 
gree primal in character, clear and transparent, all the 
varying forms of which plainly took root in the primi- 
tive views and expressions of man upon the powers 
and processes of nature. As Max Miiller put it, the 
mythological sphynx here reveals her secret ; we can 
just barely throw a glance behind the scenes upon the 
forces whose play, upon Greek soil, achieved that 
splendid stage-effect, the majestic drama of the Olym- 
pian gods. A new direction of inquiry seemed to have 
opened to science, leading by undreamt-of paths to 
the farthest past in the life of the human soul. 

Those who first broke through these paths must 
indeed have been possessed to an unnatural degree by 
indifference and suspicion, had not a kind of intoxica- 
tion overwhelmed them as they confronted this pleni- 
tude of history, — if they had not experienced the hope 
that in the Veda they might with one bold grasp suc- 
ceed in seizing the origin of myths and of very religion 
herself, zu schaue?i alU Wirkenskraft vnd Satiien. 

Have all these results — a lasting achievement, as 
it was supposed — avoided the fate of again being dissi- 


When Christianity spread over Northern Europe, 
it came in contact with the Teutonic and Celtic na- 
tions, who added new ideas to its system and trans- 
formed several characteristic features of its world- 
view. Christianity of to-day is essentially a Teutonic 
religion. The ethics of Christianity, which formerly was 
expressed in the sentence " Resist not evil " began, in 
agreement with the combative spirit of the Teuton 
race, more and more to emphasise the necessity of 
struggle. Not only was the figure of Christ conceived 
after the model of a Teutonic war-king, the son of the 
emperor, while his disciples became his faithful vas- 
sals ; not only did the archangels assume the noble 
features of the great northern gods, Donar, Wodan, 
Fro, and others ; not only were the old pagan feasts 
changed into Christian festivals ; the Yuletide became 
Christmas and the Ostara feast in the spring was cele- 
brated in commemoration of Christ's resurrection; but 
also the individual features of the evil powers of the 
North were transferred to Satan and his host. The 
Ice-giants of the Norsemen, the Nifelheim of the Sax- 
ons, the Nether-world of the Irish, all contributed 

their share to the popular notions of the Christian de- 
monology of the Middle Ages. The very name ' ' hell ' ' 
is a Teutonic word which originally signified a hollow 
space or a cave underground. The weird and terrible 
appearances of the gods, too, were retained for the 
adornment of demoniacal legends ; and Odhin as storm- 
god became "the wild hunter." 

Dr. Ernst Krause,i who is best known under his 
nom de plti7ne of Carus Sterne, has undertaken the work 
of proving the Northern influence upon Southern fairy 
tales and legends. He finds that all those myths 
which symbolise the death and resurrection of the 
sun, giving rise to the idea of immortality, doomsday, 
and the final restoration of the world, have originated 
in Northern countries where on Christmas day the sun 
that seemed lost returns spreading again light and 
life. Our philologists believe that the Nibelungenlied 
contains features of Homer's great epics ; but, accord- 
ing to Dr. Krause, it would seem that the original 
source of the Nibelungenlied is older than Homer, 
and that the theme of the Voluspa, the first song of 
the Edda, being a vision that proclaims the final de- 
struction and regeneration of heaven and earth, ante- 
dates Christ's prophecies of the coming judgment. 
(Matth., 24.) Christianity comes to us from the Orient, 
but the idea that a God will die and be resurrected is 
of Northern origin. 

Dr. Krause proceeds to prove that the conception 
of hell as depicted in Dante's Divina Comedia which 
may be regarded as the classical conception of Roman 
Catholic Christianity, is in all its essential elements 
the product of a Northern imagination.^ Dante fol- 
lowed closely Teutonic traditions which in his time 
had become a common possession in the Christian 
world through the writings of Saxo Grammaticus, Beda 
Venerabilis, Albericus, Caedmon, Caesarius of Heister- 
bach, and others. It is specially noteworthy that the 
deepest hell of Dante's Inferno is not, as Southern 
people are accustomed to describe the place of tor- 
ture, a burning sulphur lake, but the wintry desolation 
of an ice-palace. 

Dante's vision is by no means the product of his 
own imagination. It embodies a great number of old 
traditions. Dante reproduced in his description of 
Satan and hell the mythological views of the North so 
popular in his days. His cantos not only remind us 
of Ulysses's and Virgil's journey to the Nether-world, 
but also and mainly of Knight Owain's descent into 
St. Patrick's Purgatory in Ireland, and of the vision 
of hell as described by Beda, Albericus, and Chevalier 
Tundalus. In the last song of the Inferno, Dante 
describes the residence of the sovereign of hell, which 
is surrounded by a thick fog, so as to make it neces- 

1 Die Trojaburgen Nord-Europas, Carl Flemming. Glogau. 1893. 

2 Vossische Zeilung, 1896, Feb. 2, 9, 10 ; Sonntagsbeilagen. 



sary for the poet to be led by the hand of his guide. 
There the ice -palace stands almost inaccessible 
through the cold blizzards that blow about it ; and 
there the ruler of hell and his most cursed fellows, 
stand with their bodies partly frozen in the trans- 
parent ice. 

Dante's portraiture of the evil demon whom he 
calls "Dis" agrees precisely with the appearance of 
the main Northern deity, as it was commonly revered 
among the Celts, the Teutons, and the Slavs. Dis 
has three faces : one in front, and one on each side. 
The middle face is red, that on the right side whitish- 
yellow, that on the left side, black. Thus the trinity 
idea was transferred to Satan on account of the ill- 
shaped idols of the crude art of Northern civilisation. 
Dante's description of Dis reminds us not only of the 
three-headed hoar-giant of the Edda, Hrim-Grimnir, 
who lives at the door of death, but also of the trinity of 
various pagan gods, especially of Triglaf, the triune 
deity of the Slavs. 

When Bishop Otto of Bamberg converted the 
Pomeranians to Christianity, he broke, in 11 24, the 
three-headed Triglaf idol in the temple of Stettin and 
sent its head to Pope Honorius II. at Rome. Dr. 
Krause suggests that since Dante, who as an ambassa- 
dor of Florence visited Rome in 1301, must have seen 
with his own eyes the head of the Pomeranian Triglaf, 
it is by no means impossible that he used it as a pro- 
totype for the description of his Satan. 

It is interesting to observe the transformation of 
the old Teutonic giants who were plain personifica- 
tions of the crude forces of nature into Christian dev- 
ils. Northern mythology represents the giants, be 
they mountain-giants, storm-giants, frost-giants, fog- 
giants, or what not, as stupid, and they are frequently 
conquered by the wisdom of the gods, or by human 
cunning and invention. There are innumerable le- 
gends which preserve the old conception and simply 
replace the names of giants by devils ; and we can 
observe that all the conquests of man over nature are, 
in the old sense of the Teutonic mythology, described 
as instances in which giants or devils are outwitted in 
one or another way. 

The giants, as representatives of mountains, for- 
ests, rivers, lakes, and the ground, are always bent on 
collecting the rent that is due to the owner of the land, 
for men are merely tenants of the earth, which by 
right belongs to the giants. The giants envy men of 
their comfort and try to destroy their work. Thus the 
fog-giant Grendel appears at night-time in the hall of 
King Hrodhgar and devours at each visit thirty men. 
Beowulf, the sun-hero, fights with him and cuts off 
his arm ; he then encounters Grendel's mother, the 
giantess of the marsh whence the fog rises, and finally 
succeeds in killing both Grendel and his mother. 

The parades of giant families which form an im- 
portant feature of Dutch and Flemish carnivals may 
be a relic of older customs representing visits of the 
lords of the ground collecting their rents, which is 
given in refreshments while the people sing the giant- 
songi with the refrain : 

' ■ Keer u eens om, reuzjen, reuzjen P ' 
[Return once more, little giant, little giant !] 

The privilege of collecting rent which the giants, 
and later on in their stead the Devil, were supposed 
to possess, led to the idea of offering sacrifices in pay- 
ment of the debt due to the powerful and evil-minded 
landlords, the demoniacal giants of the soil. And this 
notion resulted in the superstition of burying alive 
either human beings or animals. Grimm says {Myth- 
ology, p. 109): 

" Frequently it was regarded as necessary to entomb within 
the foundation of a building living creatures and even men, which 
was regarded as a sacrifice to the soil which had to endure the 
weight of the structure. Through this cruel custom people hoped 
to attain permanence and stability of great buildings." 

There are innumerable stories which preserve rec- 
ords of this barbaric custom, and there can be no 
doubt that many of them are historical and that the 
practice continued until a comparatively recent time. 
We read in Thiele {Dan. Volkssagen, I., 3) that the 
walls of Copenhagen always sank down again and 
again, although they were constantly rebuilt, until the 
people took an innocent little girl, placed her on a 
chair before a table, gave her toys and sweets, and 
while she merrily played, twelve masons covered the 
vault and finished the wall, which since that time re- 
mained stable. Scutari is said to have been built in 
a similar way. A ghost appeared while the fortress 
was in the process of building, and demanded that 
that wife of the three kings who would bring the food 
to the masons on the next day should be entombed in 
the foundation. Being a young mother, she was per- 
mitted to nurse her baby, and a hole was left for that 
purpose which was closed as soon as the child was 

We read in F. Nork's Sitten und Gebrauche (Das 
Kloster, Vol. XII.) that when in 1813 the ice broke 
the dam of the river Elbe and the engineers had great 
trouble in repairing it, an old man addressed the dike- 
inspector, saying: " You will never repair the dike 
unless you bury in it an innocent little child," and 
Grimm adduces even a more modern instance {Sagen, 
p. 1095) which dates from the year 1843. "When the 
new bridge in Halle was built," Grimm tells us, "the 
people talked of a child which should be buried in its 

So long did these superstitions continue after the. 
cruel rite had been abandoned, and they were held 

1 FloegeVs Gcschichte des Grotesk'Kontischen , by Ebeling, p. 286, quotes the 
giant-song as sung in Ypern. 



not only in spite of the higher morality which Chris- 
tianity taught, but even in the name of Christianity. 
In Tommaseo's Canti Populari an instance is quoted 
that the voice of an archangel from heaven demanded 
the builders of a wall to entomb the wife of the archi- 
tect in its foundation. The practice is here regarded 
as Christian and it is apparent that there are instances 
in which Christian authorities were sufficiently igno- 
rant to sanction it, for even the erection of churches 
was supposed to require the same cruel sacrifice ; and 
there were cases in which, according to the special 
sanctity of the place, it was deemed necessary to bury 
a priest because children or women were not regarded 
as sufficient. In Giinther's Sagenbuch (D. D. V., Vol. 
I-. P- 33) we read that the Strassburg cathedral re- 
quired the sacrifice of two human lives, and that two 
brothers lie buried in its foundation. 

All the bowlders in the low lands of Germany are 
attributed either to giants or to the devils ; they are 
sometimes said to be sand-grains which giants re- 
moved from their shoes, or they were thrown down in 
anger when they found themselves cheated out of their 
own by the wit of mortals. 

There is a Mdrchen of a farmer who undertakes to 
break up heretofore uncultivated ground and the Devil 
(that is to say, the giant who owned the land and had 
seen nothing except sterile rocks and desolate deserts) 
gazed with astonishment at the green plants that sprang 
from the earth. He demanded half the crop, and the 
farmer left him his choice whether he would take the 
upper or the lower half. When the Devil chose the 
lower half, the farmer planted wheat, and when the 
upper half, he planted carrots, leaving him now the 
stubble and now the useless carrot tops. Whichever 
way the Devil turned he was outwitted. ^ 

The story came in its migration south to Arabia 
where it was discovered by Friedrich Riickert, who 
retold it in his poem "The Devil Outwitted,"^ which 
Mr. E. F. L. Gauss, of Chicago, has kindly translated 
for quotation in this article : 

" The Arabs tilled their fields align. 
Then came the Devil in a flare 
Protesting : ' Half the world is mine, 
Of your crops, too, I want my share.' 

The Arabs said, for they are sly, 

' The lower half we'll give to thee,' 
But the Devil, always aiming high, 

Replied : ' It shall the upper be ! " 

They turnips sowed all o'er their field, 
And when he came to share the crops. 

The Arabs took the subsoil yield, 
And the Devil got the turnip tops. 

IGrimm, MSrchen, No. 189, Deutsche Mytholope, No. gSi. Miillenlioff, 
No. 377. Thiele, DSnische Sagen, No. 122. 
? " Per betrogene Te«f el, ' ' 

And when another year came round 

The Devil spoke in wrathful scorn : 
' To have the lower half now, I'm bound !" 

The Arabs then sowed wheat and corn. 

When came the time again to share, 

The Arabs took the sheaves pell-mell, 
The Devil took the stubbles bare 
And fed with them the fire of hell." 

There are innumerable other legends of stupid 
devils. A miller of the Devil-mill in Kleinbautzen 
tied the Devil to the water-wheel. ' A smith, who for 
his hospitality had once a wish granted by Christ, be- 
witched the Devil and placed Lucifer, the chief of 
devils, on his anvil, which frightened him so much 
that the smith, when he died, was not admitted to 
hell.'-' And there is a humorous German folk-song of 
a tailor who, when arriving in hell, maltreated all the 
devils with his tailor utensils in the attempt at dress- 
ing them, and they swore that they would never again 
allow any tailor to come near them, even though he 
might have stolen ever so much cloth. ^ 

One of the oldest triumphs of human skill in 
bridge-building gave rise to the Mdrchen of the Devil- 
bridge which boldly overspans the yawning gorge of 
the Reuss where the mountain-road passes up to the 
furca of the St. Gotthardt. A new bridge has been 
built by architects of the nineteenth century right be- 
low the old one ; but the old one remained for a long 
time in its place, until it broke down in recent years. 
The legend goes that a shepherd-lad engaged the 
Devil to build the bridge on the condition that the soul 
of the first living creature that would cross the bridge 
should be forfeited. When the work was finished the 
lad drove a chamois over the bridge, which the Devil, 
seeing that he was cheated out of the price he had ex- 
pected, wrathfully tore into pieces.* p. c. 



Is THE earth a living animal ? 

Does this question seem too strange ? In our days ought any 
question to seem too strange for at least inquiry into its meaning 
and grounds ? The hypothesis implied in this one has long pre- 
sented itself to me as a natural speculation, growing out of the 
suggestive incompleteness of human and comparative biology and 

t Preusker, Blicke in die vaterl, Vorzeit, I., p 182. 
2Grimm's MSrchen Anmerk., III., 138. 

3The song may be found in various collections of German folk-songs. Its 
tirst verse runs : 

" Es wollt ein Schneider wandern, 

Des Montags in der Fruh. 

Begegnet ihm der Teufel, 

Hat weder Kleider noch Schuh. 

He, he, du Schneidergesell, 

Du musst mit mir zur HOll, 

Du sollst die Teufel kleiden, 

Es koste was es wiill." 
^Qixxmrn, Deutsche Sa^en^ No. 3j5, ^nd TqWst, A^^enzelier Sprachschat^^ 



psychology, and which I shall try to sketch roughly in the form 
of the following propositions and remarks : 

1. It would be singular to expect that the animal physiology 
and psychology on the surface of our globe are the only physiol- 
ogy and psychology in the universe. This proposition will, in 
fact, be trite to most who hold the currently accepted ideas of 
evolution (evolutionary monism). Hinton's Life in Nature deals 
with the question in a well-developed manner so far as the uni- 
verse in general is concerned. The poets also deal with it in their 
way, but without logical form— fVj^ magnifiqiie mais ce n'est pas 
la guerre. 

2. Apart, however, from a wide and general view of life as a 
principle of the universe, is it not possible to seek the links of di- 
rect connexion between the life which has arisen on this globe and 
the globe itself from which it has probably specifically sprung ? 
Has our biology (as stated, for example, in Spencer's Principles of 
Biology) stopped too short, in its backward look, at the stage of 
the so-called "origin of life" (illustrated by the "spontaneous 
generation" and "properties of colloids" controversies)? 

3. Geology is concerned with the material structure of the 
Earth. Has any one sought for traces of psychological or biolo- 
gical life in it, or considered it as possibly a vital organism ? Have 
the possible structural, kinetic, and rhythmical resemblances of 
the earth as a body to animal forms and movements ever been in- 
vestigated ? There is something very similar, for instance, to the 
relation of glands and sense-organs in the tree-life and forms of 
animal-life which grow upon the surface of the globe. Have the 
heat-conditions of its interior also any suggestiveness as condi- 
tions befitting a larger life than ours ? What are its quasi-cellular, 
epidermal, and colloidal facts in the light of this hypothesis ? Are 
there ascertainable or reasonable conjectural broader laws of life 
than those of our present biology — laws deducible from study of 
the earth as a hypothetical living organism ? 

4. Are we too lightly to cast aside even a search for psycho- 
logical evidences in its movements and relations ? When we con- 
sider the reign of purposiveness in willing, intelligence, instinct, 
habit, function, and evolution, we are warranted in looking for 
mental organisation everywhere. Hegel rightly sought it in his- 
tory, among other fields. What I want is to see it adequately 
tested by concrete scientific study and specific experiment. If 
successful, a new science of the most marvellous and fruitful na- 
ture would likely open to man's ken. 

— The Question Stated. — The First Stage of Free Thought, Its 
Nature and Limitation.— The Second Stage, Enterprise.— Con- 
quests of Investigation. — Stationariness of Criticism. — Third Stage, 
Secularism. — Three Principles Vindicated. — How Secularism 
Arose. — How it was Diffused. — Secular Instruction Distinct from 
Secularism. — The Distinction made further Evident. — Self-defen- 
sive for the People. — Rejected Tenets Replaced by Better. — 
Morality Independent of Theology. — Ethical Certitude. — The 
Ethical Method of Controversy. — Its Discrimination. — Apart 
from Christianism — Secularism Creates a New Responsibility. — 
Through Opposition to Recognition. — Self-Extending Principles. 


With this number of The Open Court we begin the publica- 
tion of a series of articles by G. J. Holyoake, the well-known 
leader of secular thought in England. Whether or not we are in 
accord with his views we are as yet unable to say, but this much 
we know, that the confession of faith of a man like Holyoake, who 
distinguished himself in the cause of free thought and the liberty 
of sociological action since the days of the Chartist movement, in 
which he took a prominent part, will be worth while reading and 
weighing. Mr. Holyoake's life with high aspirations and noble 
martyrdom is one of the factors, and by no means one of the 
lesser ones, which during the Victorian era contributed so much 
to insure the progress that took place in England in the domains 
of religion, politics, and sociology. Mr. Holyoake's interesting 
autobiography. Sixty Years of an Agitator' s Life, recently appeared 
in the pages of that excellent newspaper The Newcastle IVeekly 
Chronicle, and is now published in book-form by T. Fisher Unwin. 
(See the latter's Good Reading.) Our readers may expect that we 
shall publish a few comments on Mr. Holyoake's articles after 
their complete publication. 

Mr. Holyoake promises to treat, in very brief chapters, the 
following subjects ; Open Thought the First Step to Intelligence. 

Mother Nature's Children is a weekly publication of the 
Western Unitarian Sunday-school Society, 175 Dearborn St., Chi- 
cago, which is an excellent help to parents for the instruction of 
their children. It is profusely illustrated, showing instructive and 
well-executed pictures both of human and animal parental pro- 
tection and love. The accompanying articles are well fitted to be 
read to children, or, when children are too small to be patient 
listeners, to be used as material for the explanation of the pic- 
tures. The Rev. Dr. Gould informs us that the new periodical 
has already a large circulation, and we do not wonder, for it is 
extremely practical and fills a sorely-felt need in the nursery. 
St. Nicholas and The Youth's Companion are splendid for our boys 
and girls. Babyhood is a valuable guide for mothers, but Mother 
Nature's Children is the best we have seen for children from four 
to eight years. It would be a valuable periodical for every kin- 
dergarten. It receives the support of both the orthodox and the 
heterodox ; and it deserves it. 

N. B.— By special arrangements with the Cosmopolitan Publishing 
Company we are enabled to offer a full year's subscription to the two 
magazines, THE COSMOPOLITAN and THE OPEN COURT, at the un- 
usually low price of $1.75. This advantageous offer holds good for all 
new subscriptions and for renewals, until retracted.— The Open Court 
Publishing Company. 



CHICAGO, ILLINOIS, Post Office Drawer F. 

E. C. HEGELER, Publisher. 

DR. PAUL CARUS, Editck. 



N. B. Binding Cases for single yearly volumes of The Opeh Court wil 
be supplied on order. Price, 75 ceots each. 


GENCE. George Jacob Holyoake 4871 

berg 4872 


MONOLOGY. Editor 4875 


Lighthall 4877 

NOTES, .................................... 4878 



The Open Court. 



No. 451. (V0L.X.-16) CHICAGO, APRIL 16, 1896. 

J One Dollar per Year. 
1 Single Copies, 5 Cents, 

Copyright by The Open Court Publishing Co.— Reprinls are permitted only on condition of giving full credit to a 

iiithor and publisher. 


In Memoriam. 

On April gth, in the afternoon, the sad news reached 
us of ex Lieut. Governor Gustav Koerner's death. In 
spite of his advanced age, which was four score years 
and more, he remained strong and healthy to the last. 
He did not suffer from a protracted illness, but re- 
mained active until almost the very end, reading, 
studying, writing, and attending to business affairs. 

Governor Koerner was born of a patrician family 
at Frankfort-on-the-Main in Germany, November 20, 
i8og. He studied jurisprudence in Jena, and being 
implicated in the revolutionary movment against the 
German Bundestag, he had to flee for his life and in 
1833 emigrated to the United States, where he deemed 
it wise to make himself thoroughly familiar with the 
English language and the American forms of law at 
the State University of Kentucky. Then, in 1835, he 
settled in Belleville, Illinois. He practised law and 
played a most prominent part in the politics of the 
United States, and especially of Illinois. He published 
commentaries on the Illinois State Laws and was a 
member of the State Legislature of 1842-1843. He 
was a judge of the Supreme Court 1845-1851 and was 
elected Lieutenant Governor 1853-1857. He was a 
Democrat, except during the time of the Rebellion and 
on questions touching slavery. During the war he 
assisted in the organisation of troops and held the 
rank of Colonel, but was prevented by illness from ser- 
vice in the field. He had also been a member of the 
famous committee which drew up the platform on 
which Lincoln was elected, and under Lincoln was 
Minister to Spain. In 1870 he served as chairman of 
the first railroad commission of Illinois. Subsequently, 
in 1872 he left the Republican party and joined the 
Liberal movement, becoming candidate for governor 
with Greely, and although beaten, his popularity was 
evinced by his running many thousand votes ahead of 
his ticket. 

His literary activity was extraordinary for a man 
actively engaged in politics and in an extensive law- 
practice. His book Das deutsche Element in den Ver- 
einigten Staaten 1828-1848 is a most valuable source 
for historians, Hjs memoirs of Spaiji show that he 

was a great connoisseur of art. He contributed to 
various German papers both in Germany and in Amer- 

Governor Koerner was always highly respected by 
the residents of Belleville and St. Louis and also by 
the leaders of both parties. His escutcheon remained 
untarnished ; and not even the slightest suspicion ever 
dared to question the integrity of his name. In dedica- 
ting to him his last volume of Lectures and Addresses, 
the Hon. J. B. Stallo, of Cincinnati, late Minister to 
Italy, and one of the foremost philosophers of Amer- 
ica, has given a rare and noble appreciation of his 
worth as a citizen, a thinker, and a man. 

Governor Koerner set a noble example in his 
career to public-spirited men and exhibited the rare 
type of an ideal politician. His conceptions and inter- 
pretations of the law which are the product of a com- 
bined German and American education, have become 
a part of our state life and will contribute their share 
in moulding the legal ideas of the generations to come. 

During his long and useful career he was in con- 
tact with a great number of the most prominent men 
of this country as well as with those of Germany and 
Spain, and he kept up a lively correspondence with 
political leaders and editors. His advice and judg- 
ment were always highly appreciated, the more so as 
he was known to be one of the best read and most 
scholarly of men. There is scarcely an important 
work, especially of those bearing on history and poli- 
tics, both of Europe and America, which he had not 
perused, and it seems a pity that he did not publish his 
autobiography, for many of his interesting observa- 
tions would have contributed not a little to a better 
understanding of the character of various great men 
of his time. It is reported, however, that his Memoirs 
exist in manuscript form, and we trust that they will 
be speedily published. 

Governor Koerner contributed frequently to the 
columns of The Open Court, especially when his spirit 
was moved by some philosophical or historical work, 
and we feel that we have lost an important collabora- 
tor as well as a valuable friend, but the recollections 
of the personal intercourse which a good fate per- 
mitted us to enjoy, will always be cherished in UH' 
dying memory. 





"He who cannot reason is defenceless; 
he who fears to reason has a coward mind; he 
who will not reason is willing to be deceived 
and will deceive all who listen to him. 

—Maxim 0/ Free Thought. 

Free thought is founded upon reason. It is the 
exercise of reason, without which free thought is free 
foolishness. Free thought being the precursor of Sec- 
ularism, it is necessary first to describe its principles 
and their limitation. Free thought means independ- 
ent self-thinking. Some say all thought is free since 
a man can think what he pleases and no one can pre- 
vent him, which is not true. Unfortunately thinking 
can be prevented by subtle spiritual intimidation, in 
earlier and even in later life. 

When a police agent found young Mazzini in the 
fields of Genoa, apparently meditating, his father's at- 
tention was called to the youth. His father was told 
that the Austrian Government did not permit thinking. 
The Inquisition intimidated nations from thinking. 
The priests by preventing instruction and prohibiting 
books, limited thinking. Archbishop Whately shows 
that no one can reason without words, and since speech 
can be, and is, disallowed and made penal, the high- 
way of thought can be closed. No one can think to 
any purpose without inquiry concerning his subject, 
and inquiry can be made impossible. It is of little 
use that any one thinks who cannot verify his ideas by 
comparison with those of his compeers. To prevent 
this is to discourage thought. In fact thousands are 
prevented thinking by denying them the means and 
the facilities of thinking. 

Free thought means fearless thought. It is not 
deterred by legal penalties, nor by spiritual conse- 
quences. Dissent from the Bible does not alarm the 
true investigator, who takes truth for authority not au- 
thority for truth. The thinker who is really free, is 
independent — he is under no dread — he yields to no 
menace — he is not dismayed by law, nor custom, nor 
pulpits, nor society — whose opinion appals so many. 
He who has the manly passion of free thought, has 
no fear of anything, save the fear of error. 

Fearlessness is the essential condition of effective 
thought. If Satan sits at the top of the Bible with 
perdition open underneath it — into which its readers 
will be pushed who may doubt what they find in its 
pages — the right of private judgment is a snare. A 
man is a fool who inquires at this risk. He had better 
accept at once the superstition of the first priest he 
meets. It is not conceivable how a Christian can be 
difree thinker. 

He who is afraid to know both sides of a question 
cannot think upon it. Christians do not, as a rule. 

want to know what can be said against their views, 
and keep out of libraries all books which would inform 
others. Thus such Christians cannot think freely, and 
are against others doing it. Doubt comes of thinking 
— the Christian commonly regards doubt as sin. How 
can he be a free thinker who thinks thinking is a sin ? 
Free thought implies three things as conditions of 
truth : 

1. Free inquir}', which is the pathway to truth. 

2. Free publicity to the ideas acquired, in order to 
learn whether they are useful — which is the encourage- 
ment of truth. 

3. The free discussion of convictions without which 
it is not possible to know whether they are true or 
false, which is the verification of truth. 

A man is not a man unless he is a thinker — he is a 
fool having no ideas of his own. If he happens to live 
among men who do think, he browses like an animal on 
their ideas. He is a sort of kept man being supported 
by the thoughts of others. He is what in England is 
called a pauper, who subsists upon "outdoor relief," 
allowed him by men of intellect. 

Without the right of publicity, individual thought, 
however praiseworthy and however perfect, would be 
barren to the community. Algernon Sidney said : 
"The best legacy I can leave my children is free 
speech and the example of using it." 

The clergy of every denomination are unfriendly to 
its use. The soldiers of the cross do not fight adver- 
saries in the open. Mr. Gladstone alone among men 
of eminent piety has insisted upon the duty of the 
Church to prove its claims in discussion. In his In- 
troduction to his address at the Liverpool College 
(1872 or 1873) he said: "I wish to place on record 
my conviction that belief cannot now be defended by 
reticence any more than by railing, or by any privi- 
leges or assumption." Since the day of Milton there 
has been no greater authority on the religious wisdom 
of debate. 

Thought, even theological, is often useless, ill-in- 
formed, foolish, mischievous, or even wicked, and he 
alone who submits it to free criticism gives guarantees 
that he means well, and is self-convinced. By criti- 
cism alone comes exposure, correction, or confirma- 
tion. The right of criticism is the sole protection of 
the community against error of custom, ignorance, 
prejudice, or incompetence. It is not until a proposi- 
tion has been generally accepted after open and fair 
examination, that it can be considered as established 
and can safely be made a ground of action or belief.' 

These are the implementary rights of thought. They 
are what grammar is to the writer, which teaches him 
how to express himself — but not what to say. These 
rights are as the rules of navigation to the mariner — 

ISee Formation 0/ Opinions, by Samuel Bailey. 



they teach him how to steer a ship but do not instruct 
him where to steer to. 

The full exercise of mental freedom is what train- 
ing in the principles of jurisprudence is to the pleader, 
but it does not provide him with a brief. It is con- 
ceivable that a man may come to be a master of inde- 
pendent thinking and never put his powers to use — 
just as a man may know every rule of grammar and 
yet never write a book. In the same way a man may 
pass an examination in the art of navigation and never 
take command of a vessel — or he may qualify for a 
Barrister, be called to the Bar and never plead in any 
court. We know from experience that many persons 
join in the combat for the right of intellectual freedom 
for its own sake, without intending or caring to use 
the right when won. Some are generous enough to 
claim and contend for these rights from the belief that 
they may be useful to others. This is the first stage 
of free thought, and, as has been said, many never 
pass beyond it. 

Independent thinking is concerned primarily with 
removing obstacles to its own action, and in contests 
for liberty of speech by tongue and pen. The free 
mind fights mainly for its own freedom. It may be- 
gin in curiosity and may end in intellectual pride — 
unless conscience takes care of it. Its nature is icon- 
oclastic and it may exist without ideas of reconstruc- 

Though a man goes no further, he is a better man 
than he who never went as far. He has acquired a 
new power, and is sure of his own mind. Just as one 
who has learned to fence, or to shoot, has a confidence 
in encountering an adversary, never felt by one who 
never had a sword in hand, or never practised at a 
target. The sea is an element of recreation to one who 
has learned to swim — it is an element of death to one 
ignorant of the art. Besides, he has attained a cour- 
age and confidence unknown to the man of orthodox 
mind. Since God (we are assured) is the God of truth 
— the honest searcher after truth has God on his side, 
and has no dread of the King of Perdition — the terror 
of all Christian people — since the business of Satan is 
with those who are content with false ideas — not with 
those who seek the true. If it be a duty to seek the 
truth and to live the truth, honest discussion, which 
discerns it, identifies it, clears it, and establishes it, is 
a form of worship of real honor to God and of true 
service to man. If the clergyman's speech on behalf 
of God is rendered exact by criticism, the criticism is 
a tribute — and no mean tribute to heaven. Thus the 
free exercise of the rights of thought involve no risk 

Moreover, so far as a man thinks he gains — thought 
implies enterprise and exertion of mind, and the re- 
sult is wealth of understanding, to be acquired in no 

other way. This intellectual property like other prop- 
erty, has its rights and duties. The thinker's right is 
to be left in undisturbed possession of what he has 
earned : and his duty is to share his discoveries of 
truth with mankind, to whom he owes his opportuni- 
ties of acquiring it. 

Free expression involves consideration for others, 
on principle. Democracy without personal deference 
becomes a nuisance ; so free speech without courtesy 
is repulsive, as free publicity would be, if not mainly 
limited to reasoned truth. Otherwise every blatant 
impulse would have the same right of utterance as 
verified ideas. Even truth can only claim priority of 
utterance, when its utility is manifest. As the number 
and length of hairs on a man's head is less important 
to know, than the number and quality of the ideas in 
his brain. 

True free thought requires special qualities to in- 
sure itself acceptance. It must be owned that the 
thinker is a disturber. He is a truth-hunter, and there 
is no telling what he will find. Truth is an exile which 
has been kept out of her kingdom, and Error is a 
usurper in possession of it ; and the moment Truth 
comes into her sight. Error has to give up its occu- 
pancy of her territory ; and as everybody consciously, 
or unconsciously harbors some of the emissaries of the 
usurper, they do not like owning the fact, and they 
dispute the warrant of truth to search their premises — 
though to be relieved of such deceitful and costly in- 
mates would be an advantage to them. 

An inalienable attribute of free thought, which no 
theology possesses, is absolute toleration of all ideas 
put forward in the interests of public truth, and sub- 
mitted to public discussion. The true free thinker is 
in favor of the free action of all opinion which injures 
no one else. He puts the best construction he can on 
the acts of others, not only because he has thereby less 
to tolerate, but from perceiving he who lacks tolerance 
towards the ideas of others has no claim for the tol- 
erance of his own. The defender of toleration must 
himself be tolerant. Condeming the coercion of ideas, 
he is pledged to combat error only by reason. Vin- 
dictiveness towards the erring is not only inconsis- 
tency, it is persecution. Thus free thought is the only 
self-defence against error and by the toleration it im- 
poses respectfulness in controversy. 



An attack upon the teachings of comparative myth- 
ology, upon the belief in the primitive character of the 
world of Vedic gods and legends, was slowly prepar- 
ing. It came, on the one hand, from the advances 
made in philological investigations, which stripped 
one supposed certainty after another of its plausible 



glitter. It came, on the other, from a more material 
opposition, the speculations, the criticisms, the dis- 
coveries, of a newly sprouting but sturdy offshoot of 
science, ethnology. 

We shall inquire first how the art of manipulating 
those philological problems deepened, upon which 
pretty nearly everything as taught by comparative 
mythology depended. 

In the comparison of Indian words with the Greek 
or Germanic a tendency arose to be severer, more sus- 
picious, more deliberate. And with good reason. 
Greater circumspection was observed in applying a 
principle, theretofore too frequently neglected, of first 
subjecting the word — before undertaking to draw par- 
allels between it and words of another tongue — to a 
thorough consideration within the domain of its own 
language, and to an examination of it in all its con- 
nexions there, throughout the whole circle of words 
related to it. And then, afterward, when the bound- 
aries of the several great lingual families were crossed 
and the attempt made to bridge over the wide clefts 
between their respective vocabularies by means of 
their resemblances, it was insisted upon, with a strin- 
gency unknown to the earlier period, that a proper re- 
gard should be paid to individual sounds and their 
equivalent individual sounds in the kindred languages ; 
correspondences which about this time began to be 
reduced to laws of a more and more unerring charac- 
ter. The mere external resemblance of words was no 
longer worth considering — that was something subjec- 
tive and only a subjective estimate could be passed 
upon it. Now, the certain, unchangeable conditions 
were known, in obedience to which the vocal sounds 
of the parent Indo-European tongue have developed 
into the Sanskrit or the Greek or the Teutonic. Of all 
the comparisons made between mythological names, 
as alluded to, only a small minority could pass an ex- 
amination so severe but so necessary as was now ap- 
plied to them. In a word, it is flatly impossible that 
Prometheus should be the same word as the Indian 
pramatitha ; nor can Helena be the same as Sarama, 
for the simple reason that the Greek n and the Indian 
7/1 are not equivalent. 

And just as it resulted in these word-comparisons, 
so too the practice, once pursued with such confidence, 
of tracing words of different languages to roots, which 
were taken from the capacious granary of Sanskrit 
roots, proved more questionable in its character the 
longer it was continued. The conviction grew that 
instead of yielding to the dangerous temptation to 
read the whole origin and history of a word or of a 
concept from a few consonants, the coldest restraint 
ought more properly to be exercised ; and that in thou- 
sands of cases it was necessary to resignedly accept a 
word as a fixed quantity, as the proper name of such 

and such a mythological being, without endeavoring 
to practise that dangerous art upon it of detecting 
only too easily and everywhere a sunrise or a storm- 
cloud. In a word : it grew daily more evident that an 
endeavor had been made to learn too quickly, too 
much from words, and that it was high time to exam- 
ine things instead of words, to explore with greater 
patience, less prejudice, the great concrete world of 
religious and mythological ideas, instead of guessing 
about them and in reliance upon doubtful etymologies 
imposing upon them a meaning which really and at 
bottom originated in the close atmosphere of the li- 

But let no misunderstanding arise. It is by no 
means my purpose to maintain that it was not a justi- 
fiable effort on the part of investigation, to get at the 
common inheritance from the pre-historic Indo-Euro- 
pean ages, by a comparison of the Indian, Greek, and 
German gods and legends, and thus, if possible, to 
enable the ideas of the respective peoples to mutually 
clear up and illumine both their source and their bear- 
ing. Experience alone can tell what success is to be 
attained in this way. But the measure of that success 
— though by no means wholly negative — has thus far 
justified but very modest expectations, if we consider 
such hasty results of this period as that by which Fro- 
nietheus and pramantha were regarded equivalent. 

In this direction, investigation achieved results al- 
most as barren as its purely philological fruits were 
abundant. As to the latter, it has in the main restored 
the paradigms of the Indo-Germanic language by the 
comparison of Indian, Greek, Latin, Germanic, and 
Slavic declensions and conjugations, and in the same 
way gotten at the processes by which the parent para- 
digms became transmuted into the paradigms of the 
filial tongues ; and it has accomplished this with evi- 
dences of growing confidence, since its successes all 
the while steadily augmented in volume — and this is 
the surest proof that the course pursued has been the 
correct one. 

The reason is manifest. The variations in forms, 
of grammatical systems, are the product of factors re- 
latively simple, which, for the most part, can be ex- 
pressed in formulae of almost mathematical certainty. 
In mythological history, on the contrary, a throng of 
varying influences are all at once in play, so complex 
and so involved that the glance in vain may seek to 
comprehend them all at once. A certain group of ideas 
at one time fades av/ay and disappears, anon they col- 
lect again, gather closely, and again assume a definite 
concrete form. Elements, once widely separated, later 
on meet and form new combinations, which, in their 
turn, in the endeavor to assume a finished form, or to 
maintain themselves at all, are compelled to give forth 
new ideas, offshoots of themselves. Mental processes. 



which are unconsciously conducted, intersect with con- 
scious cerebrations of primitive poesy and specula- 
tion, the motives of which frequently are far removed 
and accessible only with great difficulty to modern 
habits of thought. And finally external interests, too, 
play their part : emulations of every kind, the struggle 
for property or position, vanity and no end of other 
impulses of a similar character. And this chaotic con- 
fusion is lit up sparsely, in spots, by the murky light 
of tradition, and with this light only science has to 
work. Between these dimly lighted spots are bound- 
less expanses lying in deepest gloom ; so that when 
the thread once slips from the hand of the investigator, 
he is greatly in danger of losing himself altogether. 

It is therefore easy to comprehend that the attempt 
to bridge over the vast distance between India on the 
one hand, and Greece or the Teutonic world on the 
other, has infinitely poorer chances of success in things 
pertaining to religions and legend than in the case of 
mere inflexions. Still, when all is said, there is no 
lack of specific instances where this comparison of 
Indian and European divinities has succeeded in spite 
of the difficulties presented. The twins Asvin, literally 
"the horsemen," those radiant young divinities, who 
speed across the vault of heaven at early morn with 
their fleet chariot and to the oppressed appear as de- 
liverers from every kind of suffering, certainly corre- 
spond — of this I am firmly convinced — to the Greek 
Dioskuroi, as well as afford assistance in getting at the 
nature of the Dioskuroi. Indra, the strongest of the 
Vedic divinities, who, hurling his weapon, slays the 
dragon and liberates the imprisoned waters, is truly 
the same god as Thor in the Edda, the dragon-fighter, 
the hammer-hurler.i Both in India and in the Teutonic 
north the storm-god of the Indo-Europeans has pre- 
served a uniformity of nature which is at once recog- 
nisable. But, to repeat, the stock of such compari- 
sons which can safely be maintained, is a very modest 
one, and we hardly have reason to form hopes of ob- 
taining greater successes of this sort in the future than 
we have obtained in the past. 



The belief in Satan as held by many Christians to- 
day is harmless and tame in comparison with the old 
conception, which was taken seriously. Satan, it is 
true, was regarded as the foe of mankind, but there 

1 Note that both in the comparison Indra=Thor, as well as in that of 
Asvin=Dioskuroi, the names fail philologically to agree. As remarked be. 
fore, the attempt has been made to draw a parallel between the Greek Hermes 
and the Indian dog-divinity Sarameyas. Hermes really belongs, with greater 
show of reason, to a classification with the Vedic god Pushan, who, like 
Hermes, rules as protector over roads and travellers, like him is the messen- 
ger of the gods, and acts as escort of souls into the future life, and like Hermes 
protects herds and reveals lucky treasures. The juxtaposition of the material 
qualities of ideas thus leads to results absolutely independent of any assis- 
tance to be gotten from the etymological comparison of names. 

was no doubt about his power, and the idea prevailed 
that his services could easily be procured by those 
ready to surrender to him their souls. 

As soon as the Church became possessed of power, 
it was at once bent on the suppression of magic and 
witchcraft. Constantine began the policy of threaten- 
ing the severest punishment on all kinds of black art, 
allowing its application only for curing diseases and 
preventing hail and rain storms during the harvest. 
And Constantine's successors did not fail to preserve 
the tradition. 

A prohibition to fish implies that there is a good 
place for fishing, which tempts many to try. In the 
same way, the policy of the Christian authorities was 
tantamount to an official recognition of witchcraft as 
a mighty and powerful weapon that could be wielded 
by the initiated both for good and for evil ; and thus it 
could not fail to strengthen the Devil's credit, as well 
as to develop most exuberantly a peculiar mediaeval 
demonology. Belief in witchcraft rapidly became so 
common that almost all countries were in possession of 
laws against magicians, soothsayers, and witches. One 
remarkable exception only is found in the law-code 
of the Lombards, which contains the declaration that 
witches cannot perform any such feats as devouring 
people alive, and therefore the burning of a woman 
on the pretext of her being a witch is prohibited. 

There is a remarkable Latin book of "Dialogues 
on the life and miracles of Italian Fathers "i which 
characterises the superstitious spirit that prevailed 
among both the laity and the clergy. It is replete with 
all kinds of ridiculous tales which are taken in good 
earnest. We are told, for instance, that Gregory the 
Great, when consecrating an Arian church for Roman 
Catholic worship, successfully exorcised the Devil with 
the help of sacred relics ; Satan flew before him in 
the shape of a huge pig and evacuated the place com- 
pletely the following night with great noise. 

The Devil came more and more into prominence in 
the eighth and ninth centuries. Baptism now actually 
became an exorcism in which the Devil was driven 
out. They who received baptism had, according to 
Dionysius, to exhale three times, and according to the 
Greek euchologion, also to spit at him upon the floor. 
The Synod of Leptinee in the year 743 added to the 
confession of faith an " abrenunciation " of the Devil. 

A Low- German formula which renounces the three 
foremost German deities with all their hosts is quoted 
by Roskoff {^Geschiclite des Teiifels, p. 292) from Mass- 
man.- It consists in questions and answers, which 
read as follows : 

"Q. Forsakest thou the Devil ? 

lZ>f vita et miraculis patr. Italic, libri, IV. See Roskoff, Geschichte des 
Tdu/t'ls, p. 292. 

2 " Die deutschen Abschworungs-, Glaubens-, Beicbt- und Betformeln." 
Bil'tiograpitie tier Ceschicitte der Nationaltitteratur. Vol. VII. 



A. I forsake the Devil ! 

Q. And all Devil guilds ? 

A. And I forsake all Devil guilds. 

Q. And all Devil works ? 

A. And I forsake all Devil works, and words, Thenar (Thor) 
and Wodan and Saxnot (Fro) and all the evil ones that are his 

The fact is that Christianity itself was regarded as 
a kind of magic which in distinction to the black magic 
or necromancy would have to be classed together with 
white magic. The sacraments were supposed to be 
miraculous methods of performing supernatural feats 
quite analogous to exorcisms, and the church itself 
was, in the minds of the people, an institution of sacred 

* * 

With the belief in witchery a new period begins in 
the evolution of mankind. The Devil becomes greater 
and more respected than ever ; indeed, this is the 
classical period of his history and the prime of his 
life. Contracts were made with the Devil in which 
men surrendered their souls for all kinds of services 
on his part. 

In the thirteenth century the Devil reached the 
acme of his influence, and it is only possible to give a 
meagre sketch of the Devil's activity during this period. 
Nothing extraordinary could happen without being at- 
tributed to him, and to the people of the Middle Ages 
many things, ordinary to us, were very extraordinary. 

In the Dialogiis Miraculorum, by Caesarius von 
Heisterbach (who died about 1245), we find that not 
only thunder-storms, hail-storms, innundations, dis- 
eases, but also unexpected noises, the rustling of 
leaves, the howling of the wind, were attributed to Old 
Nick. He appears as a bear, a monkey, a toad, a ra- 
ven, a vulture, as a gentleman, a soldier, a hunter, a 
peasant, a dragon, a negro. Arrogance and self-con- 
ceit are the main- springs of his character. 

Caesarius's book has become famous and rightly so, 
not on account of any peculiar merit of its author, but 
because it is a true picture of the average conception 
of the times. However a mere recapitulation of the 
subjects of which it treats would be impossible in con- 
sideration of a changed view of propriety.^ The good 
Lord appears like a sovereign who regards it as his 
duty to protect his faithful servants, and takes an in- 
terest in concealing their crimes. He works a special 
miracle, lest the slander of a clergyman become pub- 
lic (Book I., p. 23). The Devil having caused a man 
to sin against the sixth commandment is unable to ac- 

IThe original, which is Low-German, reads as follows : 
<?. "Forsachistu diabolaj ?" ^1. " Ec torsacho diabolffi 1 "— (?. " End al- 
lum diabol gelde ? " A. " End ec forsacho allura diabol gelde."— (?. "End 
allum diaboles uuercum ? " A. "End ec forsacho allum diaboles uuercum, 
end uuordum, Thunaer, ende Uuoden, ende Saxnote, ende allem dem unhol- 
dum the hira genotas sint." 

2 For a brief summary see Wolfgang Menzel, Deutsche Lit. Geschichte, I., 
p. 310-312. See also Roskotf, Geschichte des Teufels, pp. 317-326. 

cuse and punish the sinner, or make his guilt known, 
because the latter escapes all evil effects through the 
confessional (Book III., p. 4). The Devil once went 
to a confessor and confessed. Having enumerated 
his sins, the confessor declared that a thousand years 
would not have sufficed to commit them all, and the 
Devil answered that indeed he was much older than a 
thousand years, for he was one of the demons who fell 
with Lucifer. The priest considered his sins unpar- 
donable, and asked him whether he wanted to do 
penance. "Yes,"he said, "if the penance is not too 
heavy for me." "Well," replied the confessor, "bow 
down thrice a day, saying : ' God, my Lord and Cre- 
ator, I have sinned against thee ; forgive me.' " 
"No," said the Devil, "that would be too humiliat- 
ing for me " (III., 26, and IV., 5). There is a curious 
parallel to Peregrinus in the story of a woman, who, 
for the sake of clearing her soul of all sin, burns her- 
self to death (Book VI., p. 35). Imps are seen play- 
ing with cupids upon the trail of a gentlewoman (Book 
v., p. 7). A man gambles with the Devil, and loses 
his soul (V., 34). There are innumerable miracles and 
tales of St. Mary, the mother of Jesus, but few of them 
are endurable, while the general tone of the narration 
is unworthy of any woman — let alone the highest wo- 
man-ideal of Christianity. A dog has been baptised 
by rascals, and he turns mad (X., 145). In the hour 
of death, pious people see the Heaven open, while in- 
fidels are tortured by black men, ravens, and vultures 
(XL); and for the edification of the faithful the 
damned are thrown into the crater of a volcano (XII.). 
The Abbot Richalmus, who wrote about 1270 a 
book of revelations about the intrigues and persecu- 
tions of demons, recognises the Devil's hand in every 
little inconvenience he might happen to experience. 
It is devils that make him feel squeamish when he has 
eaten too much ; they make him fall asleep over his 
breviary. When he exposes his hand they make it feel 
chilly; when he hides it under his cloak, they tickle 
and bite it like fleas. " Once," he says, "when we 
were gathering stones for building a wall, I heard a 
Devil exclaim, 'What tiresome work ! ' He only did 
it to tempt us and make us rebellious." There is no 
noise but some Devil speaks out of it. "While I pull 
my sleeve," he says, "a rustling is heard, and devils 
speak through this sound. When I scratch myself, 
the scratching is their voice. . . . Lowly people are 
mostly seduced by anger and sadness, but the rich and 
powerful by arrogance and pride." (Roskoff, pp. 535 

-545 •) 

Another favorite conception of Christianity origi- 
nated in the Roman idea of looking upon religion 
as a legal affair. It must have been a lawyer who 
made that happy hit of presenting the case of Satan 
versus mankind or versus Christ juridically, in the form 



of a regular law-suit, in which, of course, Satan in the 
end is always worsted. The booklet, which bears 
the title Processus Sathaiia, became so popular that it 
was repeatedly edited by various authors and is still 
extant in various redactions, one of the best and oldest 
being by Bartolus, a lawyer who lived 1313-1355-' 

The Devil played the role of a joker in the Passion 
plays, and his part became more and more prominent. 
In France the idea prevailed that the great mysteries 
should always have not less than four Devils, a usage 
which is mentioned in Rabelais. Hence the proverb, 
"Fairc le diable a quatre." In German Passion plays 
the Devil appears together with "Mors," the personi- 
fication of death, and is practically the main actor in 
the whole drama. He was the intriguer who, after 
his successful revolution against the good Lord, set up 
an empire of his own in Hell ; and without the Devil's 
intrigues the whole plot of man's fall and Christ's sal- 
vation would be impossible.^ 

The works of Csesarius, of Heisterbach, Richalmus, 
Bartolus, and others are by no means the only ones 
that treat on Devil-lore; they are typical of a large 
class of similar literary productions. 

While the Church in her struggles for supremacy, 
aspiring for worldly power, began to neglect her spir- 
itual duties, people sought comfort in sects. The Ma- 
nichees increased, Katharism spread rapidly and many 
new sects, such as the Albigenses, were founded. 
Almost all sectarians were morally earnest and sincere, 
yet the general character of these sects was similar to 
the Manichees, an openly avowed dualism. The ten- 
dencies of the time were dualistic, and even the 
Church was under the influence of dualistic views. 
Nevertheless, orthodox Christianity, at least in her 
noblest expositors, such as Thomas Aquinas and other 
Christian philosophers, never lost sight of the monis- 
tic ideal, in spite of all its demonological errors. The 
demonology of the Middle Ages was at bottom a 
mythical excrescence, for the Devil's power was all 
the time regarded as a mere sham, as Blendwcrk. He 
still served the higher purposes of the omnipotent 
God, who used him for his wise and well-calculated 
ends. Thus it was a natural consequence that the 
Devil appeared in spite of his smartness as the dupe 
of God ; his fate was always to be defeated and ridi- 
culed. As such he figures in the mysteries, the Easter 
and Christmas plays, in which he acts one of the most 
important parts, that of intriguer, harlequin, and fool. 

* * 

To sum up : The Devil in the Middle Ages is en- 
titled to our ungrudging admiration for his indefatig- 

1 Concerning the Processus Sathaticr, see Dr. R. Stintzing, Ceschichte der 
popularen Litteratur des rdin. Kan.-Rechts in Deuischland, Leipsic. 1867. Ros- 
koff' s book on the Devil contains on pages 349-355 extracts from Stintzing. 

-Fioegel's GeschickU des Crotesk-Kontischen, bearbeitet von Fr. W. Ebe- 
ling, pp. 70-71, 119-120. 

able energy. There are innumerable Devil stones 
thrown at churches, there are Devil walls. Devil 
bridges, cathedrals, monasteries, castles, dikes, and 
mills, built by him for the purpose of seducing and 
gaining souls. He has his finger in the pie everywhere 
and appears to be all but omnipresent and omniscient. 

p. c. 


Who never ate with tears bis bread, 

Who never through night's heavy hours 

Sat weeping on his lonely bed. 

He knows you not, ye heavenly powers ! 

Ye doom us to life's stress and strain ; 

Ye have our soul with sin replenished ! 
And then abandon us to pain ; 

For every guilt on earth is punished. 



Sick at heart, poor in possession 
Dragged my days unto the latest, 
Poverty is of curses greatest. 
Riches are the highest good ! 
And to end my sore depression 
I went forth to dig for treasure 
"Thine my soul be at thy pleasure !" 
I wrote down with my own blood. 

Circle within circle drawing. 
Wondrous flames I then collected 
Unto herbs and bones, selected, 
And conjured a spell of might, 
Then in manner overawing. 
As I'd learned, I dug for treasure 
On the spot I found by measure. 
Black and stormy was the night. 

And I saw a light's formation 
Brightening to a star's consistence. 
Coming from the farthest distance 
Just as struck the midnight hour. 
Vf'iin was further preparation, 
For a beauteous youth, with glowing 
Splendor from a cup o'erflowing 
Spread a flash with searching power. 

And his eyes my soul delighted ; 
'Neath a wealth of flowers tender. 
With that cup of heavenly splendor 
Stepped he in the magic ring ; 
Friendly me to drink invited. 
And I thought : this youth so purely 
Off'ring gifts of heaven, surely 
Cannot be the evil king. 

"Courage drink, and life's pure pleasure," 
Quoth he. "Learn from this occasion. 


V, that of the first 1 

1 The translation of the second 1 
by Edgar Alfred Bowring. 

2 This is most likely the poem of which Schiller writes to Goethe in a letter 
dated May 23. 1797: " It is so exemplary, beautiful, and round and perfect, 
that I felt very forcibly while reading it, how even a small whole, a simple 
idea, can give us the enjoyment of the highest, by perfect presentation." 



That by anxious conjuration 
No boon can this place afford. 
Dig no longer for vain treasure! 
Work by day, and guests at leisure, 
Toilsome weeks and feastdays' pleasure, 
Be thy future magic word !" 


The April Monist opens with two articles on Roentgen's 
jr-rays, by leading European scientists. Prof. Ernst Mach of 
Vienna describes a method of applying the new rays to an old de- 
vice invented by him for taking stereoscopic or solid pictures of 
objects. The usual Roentgen pictures appear flat. By the sug- 
gested modification of this process they are made to appear in 
solid relief like real objects. Professor Schubert of Hamburg 
writes at length on the -r-rays, reviews in simple language their 
history, embracing the researches of Faraday, Geissler, Hittorf, 
Pluecker, Crookes, Lenard, and Roentgen, discusses the physical 
character of the rays, and lastly expounds the methods of work so 
successfully employed in the Hamburg State-Laboratory. Two 
beautiful actinograms accompany this article — one of a fish with 
shells in its intestines, and one of a lady's hand into which a nee- 
dle had been run. No article has appeared on this subject more 
adapted to the popular comprehension. 

Edward Atkinson of Boston, practical financier and econo- 
mist, writes a timely article on The Philosophy of Money. He has 
compressed a wonderful amount of logic and facts into the brief 
space of this essay, which should be read by all who are desirous 
of knowing the origin, history, and purport of our mediums of ex- 
change. A well-known Polish philosopher, W. Lutoslawski, of 
Kazan University, Russia, also offers a striking article entitled 
In Search of True Beings, wherein he describes the philosophy of 
Polish individualism. 

Remarkably fine is the contribution From Animal to Man, by 
Prof. Joseph Le Conte of Berkeley, California. Prof. Joseph Le 
Conte is one of the foremost scientists and thinkers of America 
and his work has all the marks of talent and of broad scientific 
culture. His article traces in a lucid manner the differences and 
common features of animal and human intelligence. The same 
spirit of philosophical culture pervades the article by Prof. J. Clark 
Murray on The DiialisUc Conception of Nature, which depicts 
clearly and tersely the fortunes of dualistic notions both in philos- 
ophy and in religion. More profound and technical is the article 
N^ature and the Individual Mind by Prof. Kurd Lasswitz, a noted 
German philosopher, who treats one of the most abstruse and 
difficult of philosophical problems. 

The last article is a discussion of The Nature of Pleasure and 
Pain, by Dr. Paul Cams, with particular reference to the theory 
of the famous psychologist. Prof. Th. Ribot. 

The usual Literary Correspondence from foreign countries 
and a rich selection of book notices, etc., conclude this number, 
which takes equal rank with its last two predecessors, on whose 
contents-pages appeared the names of Weismann, Ribot, Topi- 
nard, Lombrcso, Romanes, and Lloyd Morgan, (Single copies, 
50 cents; Annually, $2.00. The Open Court Publishing Co.: 
Chicago and London.) 


We are in receipt of a pamphlet entitled ' ' Colonial Lectures, " 
by William E. Smythe, which were delivered for the purpose of 
founding a new colony in the upper Sacramento Valley on the 
Ashurst Ranch in Tehama County. The colonial idea is set forth 
with great lucidity, and if a socialistic society within proper lim- 
itations be possible, the movement has good reasons to be success- 
ful. Such men as Edward Everett Hale of Boston, and Dr. John 

Rusk of Chicago have lent it their co-operation, and there are a 
number of enthusiastic men willing to embark in the venture. 
Those interested in the scheme are requested to apply either to 
T. B. Wakeman, 93 Nassau St., New York, or to A. W. Vorse, 
120 Tremont St., Boston, or to O. N. Goldsmith, 163 La Salle St , 
Chicago, or to Homer Wilson, Mills Building Rotunda, Room 10, 
San Francisco. 

Students of biology and evolution will be glad to know that 
Romanes's Hxaminotion of Weismannism has appeared in a cheap 
paper form in the Religion of Science Library. (Pages, 221. 
Price, 35 cents, Chicago : The Open Court Publishing Co.) This 
edition is printed on fine paper and contains as a frontispiece a 
beautiful half-tone portrait of Weismann. The glossary of tech- 
nical terms is a helpful feature of the work, which has been pro- 
nounced by an eminent critic to be " the best criticism of the sub- 
ject in our language." 

The Open Court Publishing Co. is also just issuing in the Re- 
ligion of Science Library a translation of Weismann's latest work 
Germinal Selection (Paper, 25 cents). Professor Weismann claims 
that the doctrine of germinal selection removes all the contradic- 
tions and stumbling-blocks of Darwin's theory, and he also re- 
gards it as the consummation of his own work. As distinguished 
from the Germ-plasm, it is popularly and untechnically written. 
The Preface to the book discusses the nature and aims of scien- 
tific inquiry, and the Appendix gives a brief history of the most 
pressing evolutional problems. 

N. B.— By special arrangements with tlie Cosmopolitan Publishing 
Company we are enabled to offer a full year's subscription to the two 
magazines, THE COSMOPOLITAN and THE OPEN COURT, at the un- 
usually low price of $1.75. This advantageous offer holds good for all 
new subscriptions and for renewals, until retracted.— The Open Court 
Publishing Company. 



CHICAGO, ILLINOIS, Post Office Drawer F. 

E. C. HEGELER, Pubusher. 

DR. PAUL CARUS, Editor. 


$1.00 PER YEAR. $0.50 FOR SIX MONTHS. 

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be supplied on order. Price, 75 cents each. 


GUSTAV KOERNER. In Memoriam. Editor 4879 

TURE AND LIMITATION, George J, Holyoake. 4880 
COMPARATIVE MYTHOLOGY. Prof. H. Oldenberg. 4881 



From Goethe's Wilhelra Meister 4885 

The Treasure Digger. Wolfgang Goethe. Trans- 
lated by E. F. L. Gauss 4885 



The Open Court. 



No. 452. (Vol. X.— 17.) 

CHICAGO, APRIL 23, 1896. 

( One Dollar per Year. 
I Single Copies, 5 Cents. 

Copyright by The Open Court Publishing Co. — Reprints are permitted only on condition of giving full credit to author and publisher 



George Canning, in one of his editorial contribu- 
tions to the Anti-Jacobin, admits that he owed his most 
valuable political lesson to the inventor of the safety- 
valve. "The effectiveness of that simple contrivance," 
he says, "taught me the wisdom of affording a timely 
outlet to a surplus of energies that defy restraint." 

With similar advantage the politicians of the Ger- 
man Empire might study the fire-tactics of our North 
American forest- states. Experience, it seems, has 
proved the fact that at certain times of the year forest- 
conflagrations can be fought only with fire itself. The 
task of guarding every camping-ground and railway- 
track of an extensive woodland-region would be prac- 
tically impossible, and still more hopeless is the at- 
tempt to extinguish storm-winged conflagrations by 
means of fire-engines or the felling of burning trees. 
But the simple plan of surrounding each settlement 
with a ring of burnt-out ground proved both reliable 
and inexpensive. "Prevention if possible," Commis- 
sioner McNealy of Minnesota sums up his report, 
"but conflagrations that have once gained a certain 
amount of headway can be stopped only with counter- 

Mischievous doctrines ought to be fought on a sim- 
ilar plan. Their total suppression by Government 
surveillance of a whole national literature is expen- 
sive, though not wholly impossible. Our own century 
has witnessed a stupendous, and for the time being, 
actually successful, attempt of that sort. For nearly 
fifteen years the censors of the First Empire controlled 
the literary activity of a great nation as individuals 
would control the candles and hearth-fires of their 
private household, but that system answered its pur- 
pose only while its manager in chief could maintain 
the belief in his omnipotence by a series of military 

Under his successors press-gag laws proved a mis- 
erable failure, though the zealots of conservatism tried 
to stamp out the very sparks of the scattered fires, 
and interdicted Dr. Tissot's Avis au Peuple, as well as 
Voltaire's Pucelle and Holbach's Esprit. "II n'y a ni 
pucelle ni esprit dans cette ville la" reported the literary 
inquisitors of a little country town, and an extra-pre- 

cautionary bailiff ordered the demolition of a grove of 
poplar-trees {peupliers') — "parce gu'il y a quelque chose 
de peuple," but the smouldering embers rekindled the 
flames which ultimately devoured the stronghold of 
the fire-fighters. 

Still, the enterprise of reactionary France was per- 
haps less desperately hopeless than that of the North- 
German conservatives at this period of social progress, 
though, if fires under full headway could be stopped 
by assiduous tree-felling, the efforts of the Prussian 
loyalists would not be wholly in vain. The criminal 
statistics of the German Empire show that the prose- 
cations for offences against "State, morals, and reli- 
gion," have steadily increased during the last seven 
years, till the convictions have now reached the enor- 
mous aggregate of seventy-six thousand five hundred 
and fourteen — against an average of sixty- two thou- 
sand in the three preceding years. A large percentage 
of these indictments comes under the head of Press- 
vcrgehen — abuses of the press ; yet it is but fair to add 
that among the factors of the present "epidemic of 
prosecutions " the personal sensitiveness of the Ger- 
man Emperor has been greatly overrated. Non-polit- 
ical critics of the Kaiser's eccentricities have been al- 
lowed a considerable latitude of speech, like Maxi- 
milian Harden in his daring banter of imperial poetry 
and art-attempts. Bismarck idolaters, with a pen- 
chant for odious comparisons, were wisely ignored. It 
seems, in fact, that the War Lord of protestant Ger- 
many values his prestige as a means, rather than as 
an end, and exercises his privilege of connivance, in 
order to reserve the ammunition of the legal arsenals 
for the suppression of what he considers a movement 
threatening to subvert the foundations, not only of his 
dynastic stronghold, but of nearly all extant social ar- 
rangements whatever. 

The construction of the press-laws, lesce majestatis, 
and high-treason statutes has been strained for that 
purpose. Indictments for disrespect to the person of 
the sovereign and members of his family have in many 
instances been terminated by the nolle pros, of an im- 
perial pencil decree, while the trials of socialists have 
been pushed to the bitterest possible end. "Not 
only," says a prominent leader of the obnoxious party, 
"has the Prussian Themis forgotten the purpose of 


her balance in her eagerness to use her sword on our 
heads, but her reigning representative, the judicial 
arbiter in chief, has descended from his throne to be- 
spatter us with mud, and done his utmost to make a 
mob fly at our throats," (" uns den Pobel auf den Hals 
zu hetzen ") — in allusion to the Kaiser's speech ex- 
pressing a pious wish that "the people would rise in 
their wrath to rid the earth of these ruinous wretches." 

Have those speeches not often seemed to echo 
Diocletian's philippics against the "enemies of the 
human race," the followers of the Olympus-subverting 
Nazarene ; whose doctrine was fanned by the storms 
of persecutions, till the champions of paganism clam- 
ored for an edict of irrevocable exile, and its prophets 
began to dread the issue of a struggle against an irre- 
sistible foe? "Woe be our children ! " cried the son 
of the pythoness Sospitra, when the spirit of his mother 
had answered his invocation in the temple of Serapis, 
" I see a cloud approaching, a great darkness is going 
to befall the human race." 

Analogous prophecies are whetting the sword of 
the Prussian Themis. For it would be a mistake to 
suppose that Kaiser Wilhelm is fighting the battle of 
conservatism singlehanded ; a powerful party endorses 
his policy at all risks, and thousands of patriots, 
alarmed by the smoke-cloud of the approaching con- 
flagration, are urging still stronger measures of re- 

Their loyalty and their fears are equally sincere. 
They dread the impending change as the greatest 
calamity that has ever menaced the human race ; they 
predict that the victory of socialism, in some of its 
most rampant forms, will inaugurate a more odious 
tyranny than the world has ever known, an all-com- 
prehensive despotism that will crush out individuality 
and suppress progress and the very motives of pro- 
gress, as they have never been suppressed before. 
They point out the fact that the secular autocracy of 
the worst Roman emperors was compatible with the 
toleration of some twenty different religions ; that the 
spiritual arrogance of the Roman pontiffs was often 
secularly tolerant by its very indifference to the worldly 
concerns of its converts, while "Christian Socialism" 
threatens a minute and oppressive control of our 
moral, mental, and material affairs, and will have its 
clutches upon every man's purse-strings, as well as 
upon the latch-strings of his private workshop. They 
apprehend a union of Church and State that will dis- 
lodge personal liberty from its latest mountain-refuge, 
and make the friends of self-dependence look back 
upon the present era of government paternalism as 
upon a lost paradise of freedom. They presage a final 
extinction of the half-revived ideals of Grecian beauty- 
worship, a sacrifice of science and art on the altar of 
a proscriptive workhouse communism, and predict 

that the church militant of that dismal Zion will, in 
the meantime, shrink from no menace to secure its 
triumph, and will welcome even national calamities 
that may happen to involve the ruin of its opponents. ^ 

They point out the necessity of crushing the social 
schism before it has outgrown control, and emphasise 
the expediency of waiving the observance of a few 
civil right maxims in the life and death struggle against 
a foe who threatens to abrogate all personal rights 

The chief objection against the attempted methods 
of suppression is, indeed, their complete futility. The 
conflagration has already spread beyond the control 
of government fire-engines. A rising gale fans the 
fire, and the falling of burning trees helps only to 
spread the contagious sparks. The party of the Ger- 
man Socialists, in almost all its branches, is gaining in 
prestige and resources; the schisms that threatened 
to disrupt its union were healed by persecution ; the 
rival party-leaders combine against the common foe, 
and in spite of double-shotted press-laws their attacks 
upon the strongholds of that foe are becoming yearly 
more formidable, experience has taught them the art 
of advancing their trenches without approaching the 
dead-line of the penal code. 

The Spanish and Italian conservatives have shared 
that experience. "When Crispi dissolved all the So- 
cialist organisations, October 22, 1894," writes an 
American delegate from Milan, " he imagined he had 
given our party the death-blow. As if an idea could 
be swept out of the world by a mere decree ! Barely 
two months after this decree, Socialist labor-organisa- 
tions were re-formed under new names all over Italy, 
whereby the party gained greatly in compactness. All 
the present organisations are connected with one an- 
other and have become aggressive, whereas the former 
ones were disconnected and partly mere sociable con- 
cerns. Here, in Milan, three of the eight societies 
formed in 1895 have subdivided themselves by reason 
of their large membership, and we have now twelve 

lA tendency of that sort manifests itself even now. " Inscrutable are the 
ways of Providence," says the organ of the New York Socialists ; " who would 
have thought of Abyssinia as the quarter from which a blast of wrath would 
strike the criminal Court of Italy, or who would have foreseen in King Mene- 
lick the scourge with which Crispi was to be chastised for his insane persecu- 
tions of the Socialists, and hurled headlong from power, disgraced among 
the hootings of his whole country? " {The People, March 15, 1896). 

And the same paper describes a meeting of the Milwaukee Socialist Trade 
and Labor Alliance, in a hall decorated with a "large transparency, bearing 
the legend : ' Hurrah fiir die New Yorker Wirren.' " 

In Germany several Socialistic unions went so far as to denounce their 
members for participating in the celebration of the Prussian victory anniver- 
saries, and strongly hint that they would welcome the collapse of the reigning 
dynasty in the cataclysm of a general European war. 

Curious analogies might be gleaned from the chronicle of the early Chris- 
tian Church. " It consisted of men," says Lecky, " who regarded the [Roman] 
Empire as a manifestation of Antichrist, and who looked forward with pas- 
sionate longing to its destruction. It substituted a new enthusiasm for that 
patriotism which was the very life-blood of the national existence and aspired 
to a type of character wholly inconsistent with that proud martial ardor by 
which the triumphs of Rome had been won, and by which alone her impend- 
ing ruin could be averted." {History of European Morals, p. 413.) 



organisations in this city alone, with a membership of 
nearly two thousand." 

Similar reports come from Spain, Belgium, and 
Austria, and Flug-Schriften (flying pamphlets), like 
the whirling leaves of a burning forest, have found 
their way over into Portugal and across the borders of 
the Russian Empire. 

Conservatives of all classes, and not a few liberal 
reformers, are viewing these omens of the impending 
fire-storm with growing alarm, and one of their expo- 
nents has illustrated the effectiveness of the McNealy 
plan by a striking example. Herr Richter, the leader 
of the North German Liberals, deprecates the blind 
wrath of the loyalist zealots, but fully indorses their 
apprehensions, and in his augury of the Socialistic 
future surpasses even Herbert Spencer in exposing 
the absurdity of the proposed panacea of social dis- 
tress, and traces the tendencies of the impending des- 
potism to consequences more odious than the sanscu- 
lotte or inquisitorial reign of terror. 

The effect of those prophecies rivalled that of 
Paine's political pamphlets. For the first half year 
larger and larger editions followed each other at semi- 
monthly intervals, and eighty-five thousand copies 
have by this time been sold in Berlin alone. It is 
found in the reading-rooms of aristocratic club-houses 
and in the circulating libraries of Silesian weaver- 
towns ; news-agents sell it in the waiting-saloons of 
metropolitan railway-stations, and literary notion ped- 
lars have carried it to remote hamlets of the Saxony 
metal mountains. Herr Richter has become a favorite 
author in circles where political topics have never 
been discussed before, and, like McNealy's counter- 
fires, his arguments have burnt out the ground of 
whole districts so thoroughly that subsequent conflag- 
rations will die out for lack of fuel. 

Richter is not a pet of the court-party; but the 
eighty or ninety Geheimrdthe of the Prussian capital 
should prove their wisdom of counsel by persuading 
the government to get his book illustrated by the best 
modern artists, and distribute a few million free copies 
with all the supplementary inducements of our prize- 
story publications. They should get it dramatised 
and publish a commentary edition. 

"What in the world shall 1 do with fanatics of that 
sort ? " asked the Empress Catherine after her futile 
attempts to silence the Novgorod mystics ; "they will 
not listen to reason, and martyrdom would only popu- 
larise their insanities." 

"Procurez une bonne troupe des cofnedtens," said 
Dennis Diderot. The German rationalists should also 
reprint the reductio ad absurdum of the monster maniac 
Stoecker, in Zubeil's debating-hall, where the project 
of his Christian treadmill Utopia was ridiculed by one 
of his former associates, as a proof that the leaven of 

Richter's logic is beginning to work in the Eucharist 
paste of his adversaries. As a commentary, they 
might add a translation of Herbert Spencer's poHtical 
pamphlets, which to Richter's bear the relation which 
Juvenal's analysis of social decadence bore to Cato's 
presage of its results. 

But, of course, nothing of the sort will be done till 
all other methods of resistance have been exhausted 
by a government itself too deeply tinged with the 
great political superstition, — the "idea that the opera- 
tion of nature's eternal laws can be reversed by acts 
of parliament." 

The European champions of that delusion, in fact, 
dread the Socialists as rivals, rather than as perilous 
will-o'-the-wisp hunters, and the struggle in the woods 
will continue till the wild-fires of the mad chase have 
set the continent aflame, and after a havoc, perhaps 
exceeding that of the autos-da-fe, exhausted themselves 
by their own consequences. 

And if the spark-whirls of that conflagration should 
be carried to our own shores, the counter-fires of a 
free press will prove a better safeguard than the waters 
of the Atlantic Ocean. 



More decisive than the reformation accomplished 
within philology itself, the course of which we traced 
in the last article, was the influence on Vedic research 
of a new class of inquiries, which were far removed from 
the domain of comparative philology and of Sanskrit, 
and which tended to overthrow altogether the belief 
that the Veda was the representative type of every 
primitive religion and mythology. We refer to the 
researches of the comparative ethnologists who were 
now making a highly comprehensive and systematic 
study of the elusive forms which the religious senti- 
ment, the cult, the myth-creating phantasy of modern 
peoples assumed in the lower and the lowest stages of 

And here a discovery of the utmost import was 
made, the honors of which belong first of all to Eng- 
lish investigators such as Tylor and Lang, and along 
with them to an excellent German scholar, Wilhelm 
Mannhardt. It was found that, very much like their 
weapons and utensils, so too the religion of the lowest 
orders of man, the whole world over, was everywhere 
one and the same in its essential elements. By some 
intrinsic necessity, there is always imposed upon this 
low state of evolution just this particular type of ideas 
and customs, which is the normal one, and as such 
may be looked for with absolute certainty. 

This type of belief and cult, which is only faintly 

1 Authorised translation from the Deutsche Rundschau by O. W Meyer. 



idealistic, and is dominated by thoroughly harsh and 
practical views, we shall describe at some length far- 
ther on. At this point we have simply to remark upon 
the evident conclusion to be drawn from these obser- 
vations, that the ancestors of those peoples, also, which 
we meet with in historic times as the possessors of a 
most opulent civilisation, must, in some, however re- 
mote, prehistoric age, have gone through just such a 
savage period of religious and ritualistic development. 

This fact established, there was at once opened to 
scholars who did not deem it beneath them to learn 
something from American Indians, negroes, and Aus- 
tralians, a source of highly important data drawn di- 
rectly from the mouths of living witnesses, by which 
it was possible to reveal prehistoric epochs antedating 
even the Homeric or Vedic religions, and preparatory 
to them. Reasoning from the ideas of modern savages 
to the ideas obtaining in the prehistoric savage state 
of subsequently civilised peoples, may have seemed a 
hazardous undertaking, but there was a sure correc- 
tive for the procedure. It is well-known that in all 
transitions of lower civilisations to higher, many ele- 
ments of the old condition persist and hold over in the 
new, and that the spirit of the new can neither destroy 
nor assimilate them. They persist as survivals of the 
past in the midst of altered surroundings, and are ab- 
solutely unintelligible to people who know only the 
tendency and ways of the new period ; they can be 
explained only from the point of view of the time in 
which they originated — a time when they were active 
principles, and one whose tracks they preserve, as it 
were, in a fossil condition. 

Now if our view is correct, such survivals must be 
found at every step in a mythology and a cult like the 
Veda — and, we might likewise say, in those of Homer. 
They must be the particular lurking-places of what- 
ever appears to be irrational, odd, self-contradictory, 
and difficult of exposition. But again, whatever in 
those poems seems incomprehensible to the man of 
to-day must become intelligible as soon as the art is 
acquired of looking at it from the standpoint of the 
modern savage and with the help of his peculiar logic, 
both of which are often totally distinct from ours. 

As a matter of fact, the moment a search was made 
through the ancient Indian and the related European 
civilisations for such remains of prehistoric and an- 
ticipatory culture, the conviction forced itself irresist- 
ibly on scholars that the correct method had at last been 
discovered. Problems quickly resolved themselves, 
which theretofore dared scarcely be approached. The 
most striking agreements were disclosed between the 
various types of myth and cult scattered at this very 
day over the earth among our savages and barbarians, 
and the type of myth and cult which had lain imbedded 
in the Veda as a mass of unintelligible facts, wholly ir- 

reconcilable with any interpretation derived from the 
known intellectual character of the Vedic world. 

The chain of proof was thus rendered continuous 
and conclusive. Science had succeeded (or at least 
was steadily advancing toward success) — not by means 
of bare grammatical speculations or the study of San- 
skrit roots, but by inquiries which rested at every point 
upon a basis of living fact — in showing that there was 
a certain elementary state at the beginning of all civil- 
isations and in disclosing the gray, early dawn antici- 
patory of the broad daylight of history. This was a 
revelation, which — however gradually and modestly it 
asserted itself — is perhaps of even farther-reaching im- 
portance in the exploration of antiquity than those 
brilliant exploits of the philologist's finished art which 
has opened the way to the remote recesses of Egyptian 
and Babylonian civilisation. 

As a result of this discovery, a place was given to 
the religion and mythology of the Veda widely differ- 
ent from that which the enthusiasm of its earlier stu- 
dents had sought to assign to them. The assumption 
that the Veda revealed the secret of the elementary 
formative processes of creed and cult, was thus shown 
to be as far wide of the mark, as it would have been 
to have considered the grammar of the Sanskrit, the 
complexity of which points to an infinitely long prep- 
aratory history, as the elemental grammar of human 
speech. The fact is, it is not true, as the supposition 
had been up to that time, that the myth-building phan- 
tasy of man is revealed in its natural processes in the 
Veda, as plainly as a clock housed in glass reveals all 
its wheels and works. The Vedic divinities, the Vedic 
sacrifices, are not primitive and transparent products 
of the original creative force of religion, but for the 
most part turn out, on close scrutinisation, to be an- 
cient, obscure, and complex creations. 

We shall next attempt a description of the age pre- 
ceding the Vedic religion, and also of that religion 
itself, as both appear from the point of view here 
sketched. 1 



*' Better wild ideas than no ideas at all." 

—Professor Nichol at Horsham. 

The emancipation of the understanding from in- 
timidation and restraint soon incited thinkers of enter- 
prise to put their new powers to use. Theology being 
especially a forbidden subject and the greatest repres- 
sive force, inquiry into its pretensions first attracted 
critical attention. 

In every century forlorn hopes of truth had set out 
to storm one or other of the ramparts of theology. 
Forces had been marshalled by great leaders and bat- 

II have given this subject a more detailed treatment in my book The Re- 
ligion of the Veda. (1894.) 


tie often given in the open field and unforeseen vic- 
tories are recorded, in the annals of the wars of infan- 
tine rationalism, against the full-grown powers of su- 
perstition and darkness. In every age valiant thinkers, 
scholars, philosophers, and critics, even priests in de- 
fiance of power, ecclesiastical and civil, have, at their 
own peril, explored the regions of forbidden truth. 

In Great Britain it was the courage of insurgent 
thinkers among the working class — whom no imprison- 
ment could intimidate — who caused the right of free 
speech and free publicity to be finally conceded. Thus 
rulers came round to the conclusion of Caballer, that 
"tolerance is as necessary in ideas as in social rela- 

As soon as opinion was known to be emancipated, 
men began to think who never thought before. The 
thinker no longer had to obtain a " Ticket of Leave " 
from the Churches before he could inquire — he was 
free to investigate where he would and what he would. 
Power is, as a rule, never imparted nor acquired in 
vain, and honest men felt they owed it to those who 
had won freedom for them, that they should extend 
it. Thus it came to pass that independence was an 
inspiration to action in men of intrepid minds. Pro- 
fessor Tyndall in the last words he wrote for publica- 
tion said, " I choose the nobler part of Emerson when, 
after various disenchantments, he exclaims, ' I covet 
truth !' " On printing these words the Westminster 
Gazette added : "The gladness of true heroism visits 
the heart of him who is really competent to say this." 
The energies of intellectual intrepidity l^ad doubtless 
been devoted to science and social progress — but as 
philosophers have found, down to Huxley's day, all 
exploration was forbidden in that direction. Murchi- 
son, Brewster, Buckland, and other pioneers of science 
were intimidated. Lyell held back his book, on the 
Antiquity of Man, twenty years. Tyndall, Huxley, 
and Spencer were waiting to be heard. As Huxley 
has justly said : "there was no Thoroughfare into the 
Kingdom of Nature — By Order — Moses." Hence, to 
examine theology, to discover whether its authority 
was absolute — became a necessity. It was soon seen 
that there was ground for scepticism. The priests re- 
sented criticism by representing the sceptic of their 
pretensions, as being sceptical of everything — whereas 
they were only sceptics of clerical infallibility. They 
indeed did aver that branches of human knowledge, 
received as well established, were really open to ques- 
tion — in order to show that if men could not be con- 
fident of things of which they had experience, how 
could the Churches be confident of things of which no 
man had experience — and which contradicted experi- 
ence? So far from disbelieving everything, scepticism 
went everywhere in search of truth and certainty. 
Since the Church could not be absolutely certain of 

the truth of its tenets, its duty was to be tolerant. 
But being intolerant it became as Julian Hibbert put 
it — "well-understood self-defence" to assail it. The 
Church fought for power — the thinker fought for truth. 
Free thought among the people may be likened to 
a good ship manned by adventurous mariners, who, 
cruising about in the ocean of theology came upon 
syrens, as other mariners had done before — dangerous 
to be followed by navigators bound to ports of pro- 
gress. Many were thereby decoyed to their own de- 
struction. The syrens of the Churches sang alluring 
songs whose refrains were : 

1. The Bible — the guide of God. 

2. The origin of the universe disclosed. 

3. The care of providence assured. 

4. Deliverance from peril by prayer. 

5. Original sin effaceable by grace. 

6. Perdition avoidable by faith. 

7. Future life revealed. 

These propositions were subjects of resonant 
hymns, sermons, and tracts, and were not, and are 
not, disowned, but still defended in discussion by or- 
thodox and clerical advocates. Save salvation by the 
blood of Christ (a painful idea to entertain), the other 
ideas might well fascinate the uninquiring. They had 
enchanted many believers, but the explorers of whom 
we speak had acquired the questioning spirit, and had 
learned prudently to look at both sides of familiar sub- 
jects and soon discovered that the fair-seeming propo- 
sitions which had formerly imposed on their imagina- 
tion were unsound, unsightly, and unsafe. The Syra- 
cusans of old kept a school in which slaves were taught 
the ways of bondage : Christianity has kept such a 
school in which subjection of the understanding was 
inculcated, and the pupils, now free to investigate, re- 
solved to see whether such things were true. 

Then began the reign of refutation of theological 
error — by some from indignation at having been im- 
posed upon — by others from zeal that misconception 
should end ; by more from enthusiasm for facts ; by 
the bolder sort from resentment at the intimidation 
and cruelty with which inquiry had been suppressed 
so long ; and by not a few from the love of disputation 
which has for some the delight men have for chess or 
cricket, or other pursuit which has conflict and con- 
quest in it. 

Self-determined thought is a condition of the pro- 
gress of nations. Where would science be but for open 
thought, nursing mother of enterprise, of discovery, 
of invention, of new conditions of human betterment? 

A modern Hindu writer^ tells us that : "The Hindu 
is sorely handicapped by customs which are prescribed 
by his religious books. Hedged in by minute rules 
and restrictions the various classes forming the Hindu 

1 Pramatha Nath Bose. 



community have had but little room for expansion and 
progress. The result has been stagnation. Caste has 
prevented the Hindus from sinking, but it has also 
prevented them from rising." 

The old miracle-bubbles which the Jews blew into 
the air of wonder two thousand years ago, delight 
churches — still in their childhood. The sea of theol- 
ogy had been stagnant centuries ago, had not insurgent 
thinkers, at the peril of their lives, created commotion 
in it. Morals would have been poisoned on the shores 
of theology had not free thought purified the waters 
by putting the salt of reason into that sea, freshening 
it year by year. 


The saddest side of the devil's history appears in 
the persecution of those who were supposed to be ad- 
herents of the devil; of sectarians, heretics, and witches. 
The most ridiculous accusations were made and be- 
lieved against the Manichees, Albingenses, and other 
dissenters. They were said to worship the devil by 
most obscene ceremonies, and their intercourse with 
him is described most minutely as indecent and out- 
rageous. In times of a general belief in witchcraft and 
the devil's power, nobody was safe against the accu- 
sation of being in the service of Satan. Thus the 
Stedingers, having effectually resisted the Bishop of 
Bremen when he tried to take their tithes from them 
by force of arms, were vanquished and cruelly slaugh- 
tered after having been denounced as devil-worship- 
pers. The order of the Templars, the richest and most 
powerful and even the most orthodox order of Chris- 
tianity, was accused of the meanest and most bestial 
idolatry, simply because an avaricious king of France 
was anxious to deprive them of their wealth and valu- 
able possessions ; and innumerable private citizens, as 
a rule poor people recklessly and rich people delib- 
erately, in some way or other, fell victims of this most 
shameful superstition, sometimes to benefit ecclesias- 
ticism, sometimes to serve the interests of the power- 
ful, sometimes out of sheer ignorance, and sometimes 
even with the purest and sincerest intentions of doing 
the right thing for the best of mankind, and with a 
pious desire of obeying the word of the Lord, "Thou 
shalt not suffer a witch to live" (Exodus, xxii, i8).i 

The witch-prosecution mania was a general and a 
common disease of the age. On the one hand, it can- 
not (as is often supposed) be attributed to the in- 
fluence of the Church alone, and it would, on the other 
hand, be a grave mistake to absolve the ecclesiastical 

IThe same command is twice repeated in Leviticus xx, where we read : 
*' And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying : The soul that turneth after such 
as have familiar spirits, and after wizards, I will even set my face against that 
soul, and will cut him off from among his people (verses i and 6). 

"A man also or a woman that hath a familiar spirit, or that is a wizard, 
shall surely be put to death : they shall stone them with stones : their blood 
shall be upon them." (Lev. xx, 27.) 

institutions of the fearful crimes of this superstition ; 
for the highest authorities of both catholic and protes- 
tant Christianity not only upheld the idea of witch 
prosecution, but enforced it in the execution of the 
law in all its most terrible consequences. 

It was natural that heretics were always regarded 
as belonging to the same category as witches and wiz- 
ards, for they, too, were according to the logic of ec- 
clesiastical reasoning "worshippers of Satan." Deu- 
teronomy commands that prophets and dreamers of 
dreams, who by signs or wonders that come to pass 
would persuade Israelites to obey other gods, "shall 
be pat to death " (xiii, 5-1 1). We read : 

"If thy brother, the son of thy mother, or thy son, or thy 
daughter, or the wife of thy bosom, or thy friend, which is as 
thine own soul, entice thee secretly, saying. Let us go and serve 
other gods, which thou hast not known, thou, nor thy fathers ; 

"Namely, of the gods of the people which are round about 
you, nigh unto thee, or far off from thee, from the one end of the 
earth even unto the other end of the earth ; 

"Thou shalt not consent unto him, nor hearken unto him ; 
neither shall thine eye pity him, neither shalt thou spare, neither 
shalt thou conceal him : 

"But thou shalt surely kill him; thine hand shall be first 
upon him to put him to death, and afterwards the hand of all the 

" And thou shalt stone him with stones, that he die ; because 
he hath sought to thrust thee away from the Lord thy God, which 
brought thee out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage. 

"And all Israel shall hear, and fear, and shall do no more 
any such wickedness as this is among you." 

Relying on this passage St. Hieronymus would 
not hesitate to inflict capital punishment upon her- 
etics ; and Leo the Great takes the same view.^ Un- 
der Pope Alexander III. the title "Inquisitor," in the 
sense of judge in matters of faith, was used for the 
first time at the council of Tours (in 1163). The 
synod of Verona (in 11 84) cursed all heretics, and or- 
dered them, in case they relapsed, to be handed over 
to the secular authorities for capital punishment. Pope 
Innocent III. (1198-1216) gave power to papal emis- 
saries to sue the heretics, and enjoined all bishops on 
penalty of deposition to assist in the discovery and 
prosecution of unbelievers. At the suggestion of Casti- 
lian Dominic and the Bishop of Toulouse the new or- 
der of Dominicans was instituted which was destined 
to become the working force of the Inquisition. Pope 
Gregory IX. pursued the traditional policy with great 
vigor, establishing a regular inquisitorial office for 
Italy under the name of the "Holy Office," in 1224. 

Gregory's policy was codified in an instrument of 
forty-five articles by the Council of Toulouse, in 1229, 
and thus the Inquisition became an established church- 
institution the appointment and superintendence of 
which formed an important prerogative of the pope. 
It was not until now that the pope became the abso- 

ISee Epist. xv, ad Turribium. 



lute ruler of the Church, for now even bishops could 
be cited before the papal tribunal of the Inquisitioh. 
Gregory IX. appointed (in 1232) the Dominicans as 
papal inquisitors, who performed the terrible duties 
of their office so faithfully that they truly earned the 
title of Domini canes "the dogs of the Lord," which 
originated in a word-play on their name. 

A famous fresco in the Santa Maria Novella at 
Florence entitled Domini canes, painted by Simone 
Memmi, represents the inquisitorial idea under the 
allegory of a pack of hounds chasing off the wolves 
from the sheep-fold. 

Gregory IX. sent (in 1230) Konrad of Marburg to 
Germany and gave him unlimited power of citing be- 
fore his tribunal all people suspected of witchcraft, 
commanding him to bring the guilty to the fagot. 
And this fiendish man obeyed with joy his master, 
whom he revered as the Vicar of Christ on earth. 
He encountered much opposition, for the people be- 
came rebellious and even the Archbishops of Cologne, 
Treves, and Mayence attempted to resist him. But 
Konrad remained firm ; his practices had the unequiv- 
ocal sanction of his Holiness the Pope, and he did not 
hesitate to begin proceedings even against these three 
highest dignitaries of the Church in Germany. Wher- 
ever Konrad appeared the fagots were lit and many 
innocent people became the victims of his fanaticism. 
At last he was murdered in 1233. The Archbishop 
of Mayence writes of this fiend : 

" Whoever fell into his bands had only the choice between 
a ready confession for the sake of saving his life, and a denial 
whereupon he was speedily burnt. Every false witness was ac- 
cepted, but no just defence granted — not even to people of prom- 
inence. The person arraigned had to confess that he was a heretic, 
that he had touched a toad, that he had kissed a pale man, or some 
monster. Many Catholics suffered themselves to be burned inno- 
cently rather than confess such vicious crimes, of which they knew 
they were not guilty. The weak ones, in order to save their lives, 
lied about themselves and other people, especially about such 
prominent ones whose names were suggested to them by Konrad. 
Thus brothers accused their brothers, wives their husbands, ser- 
vants their masters. Many gave money to the clergy for good 
advice as to how to protect themselves, and the greatest confusion 
originated." (Alberici Monac/U Chron. ad. a. 1233.)' 

While the establishment of the Holy Office in Ger- 
many met with serious difficulties, the inquisitors were 
welcomed in France by the pious Louis, Philip the 
Fair, and Charles IV. Under the rule of the last- 
mentioned monarch the ill-famed Bastille was built 
because the prisons no longer sufficed to hold the in- 
dicted heretics. 

In Spain the Inquisition prospered best. The Di- 
rectoriiim inquisitorum of N. Eymerich (Rome 1587), 
the inquisitor-general for Castile, allows us a complete 
insight into the proceedings of the Holy Office, its 
spy-system, its modes of cross-examination and tor- 

IRoskoS, Geschichte des Teu/els,Vo\. II., pp. 215-216. 

ture, and its spoils. Torquemada and Ximenes were 
the most determined and unrelenting successors of 
Eymerich. 1 The wealthiest, the most powerful, the 
most learned were threatened alike, and even Arch- 
bishop Carranza, the primate of the Church of Spain 
could not escape the prosecution of the inquisitors. 

In the beginning of the fifteenth century Johannes 
Nieder, a Dominican monk, published a book on 
Witches and Their Deceptiotis.^ In 1458 J. Nicolaus 
Jaquerius followed with another publication called 
the heretics' scourge or Flagellum hereticorum fascina- 
riorum. All opposition to the practices of witch-prose- 
cutors were put down. "The Prior of St. Germain, 
William von Edelin, who had preached against the 
reality of witchcraft, had to beg pardon publicly in the 
Episcopal Chapel at Evreux on September 12, 1453, 
and to confess that he himself had worshipped Satan, 
had renounced his faith in the cross, and preached 
the illusion of witchcraft on the special command of 
the devil for the propagation of the Satanic domin- 
ion." (Raynald ad. ann. 1451.) 

Witch prosecutions received a new impulse in the 
year 1484 through the bull of Pope Innocent VIII. 
beginning with the words Summis desiderantes affecti- 
bus. The inquisitors of Germany, Heinrich Institoris 
(whose German name was Kramer) and Jacob Spren- 
ger, complained of having met with resistance while 
attending to their duties, and the Pope afforded them 
the desired assistance for the sake of strengthening 
the Catholic faith' and of preventing the horrible 
crimes and excesses of witchcraft. 

The bull of Pope Innocent III. had reference to 
Germany only, but other popes, Alexander VI., Julius 
II., Leo X., and Hadrian IV. issued bulls written in 
the same spirit, instigating the zeal of the inquisitors 
to do their best for the purification of the faith and 
the suppression of witchcraft. 

The heinous bull of Pope Innocent III. was the 
immediate occasion for the writing of the Witches' 
Hammer, Malleus Malleficarum, which received the 
sanction of the Pope, the approbation of the theologi- 
cal faculty of Cologne, and a patent from Emperor 
Maximilian. Damhonder, the great criminalist of the 
sixteenth century, esteemed its authority as almost 
equal to the law; and its baneful influence extends over 
a period of three centuries. The Witches' Hammer 
or Malleus Maleficarum is one of the most famous and 

1 F. Hoffmann, Geschichte der Inquisition, Bonn, 1878. Llorente, Geschzchie 
der spanischen Inquisition. Aus dent Spanischen. 

2Fr. Joannes Nider. Suevi ordin. praedicat. s. tlieolog. profess, et here- 
ticae pestis inquisitoris, liber insignis de maleficiis et eorum deceptionibus. 

3" , . . ut fides catholica nostris potissime temporibus ubique augeatur et 
floreat, ac omnis heretica pravitas de finibus fidelium procul pellatur. . . . 
Sane nuper ad nostrum non sine ingenti molestia pervenit auditum quod . . . 
complures utriusque sexus personse . . . cum daemonibus incubis et succubis 
abuti, ac suis incantationibus . . . mulierum partus, animatium foetus, terras 
fruges . . . periri, sufifocari et extingui facere. . . ." — See Soldan, Hexen- 
processe, p. 222. Roskoff, /. /., pp. 226-292. 




infamous works ever written. Its name indicates that 
it intends to crush witchcraft. No author is mentioned, 
but Sprenger's spirit is recognised in both, its preface 
(the Apologia) and the various chapters of the book. 
It contains the most confounded nonsense, often self- 
contradictory, and is throughout irrational and super- 
stitious. To us who live in an age of calmer thought 
and more exact investigation, it is difficult to under- 
stand how its expositions could ever be believed. 

Volumes might be filled with accounts of the many 
thousand various instances of witch prosecutions. But 
every single case is so soul-harassing that we prefer to 
pass them by in silence. Therefore we select from the 
great number of prosecutions for witchcraft one in- 
stance only, which, however, is neither typical nor ex- 
traordinary in its horrors. 

We read in Konig's popular exposition of human 
superstitions, 1 p. 240 : 

"There was a farmer by the name of Veil, living in a village 
of Southern Bohemia. He was famous for his wit and unusual 
humor. At the same time he was physically strong, and when- 
ever there was a quarrel at the inn he came o0 victor. The ru- 
mor spread that he was inviolable, as sometimes hunters are sup- 
posed to be bullet-proof, and Veit never denied it. By and by he 
was regarded as a wizard, and as his cattle prospered best, and 
his fields yielded the richest crops, he was soon supposed to be in 
league with the Evil One. Now it happened that the village was 
troubled with mice, and Veit was suspected of having caused the 
plague. When questioned about it, he granted in a moment of 
humor that he had sent the mice but would soon drive them away 
again, and he promised to prove at the next church-fair that he 
could actually make mice. When the day appointed came, the inn 
was overcrowded, and the farmer Veit appeared with a big bag 
under his arm, into which he requested the company to throw 
twenty pebbles. They did so, without noticing that the bag was 
double. And while one part was empty the other contained 
twenty mice. When the pebbles were put in the bag, Veit mur- 
mured a magic formula and let the mice loose in the presence of 
his frightened audience. 

" This performance, however, had unexpected and tragic re- 
sults. The people were convinced that it was the work of hell, 
and Veit escaped with difficulty from the inn. Veit was arrested 
on the next night and delivered to the criminal court. A mole on 
his body was thought to be a stigma of the Devil, and all the 
witnesses agreed that he was a genuine wizard. His case was 
thoroughly investigated and even the University of Prague was 
consulted ; the verdict signed by the Rector Magnificus with his 
own hand was against him, and Veit, who professed his inno- 
cence, had to endure all the tortures of the inquisition. At last 
he was burned alive, and the ashes of his body were thrown into 
the wind. We read in the Acts of the law-suit that Veit mounted 
the stake ' without showing repentance or doing penance.' And 
when chains were put on his neck, around his body, and around 
his feet, he cried with a loud voice, 'My God, I die innocently.' 
Judges, professors, physicians, and theologians agreed unani- 
mously in the conviction of this innocent man." 

We abstain from quoting other instances. There 
are plenty of them, and one is always more terrible 
and infamous than the others. The accusations are 

lAusgeburien des Menschenwahns^ ein Volksbuch, Rudolstadt. 

almost always very circumstantial and definite, mostly 
of brutal indecency and ridiculously impossible. 

* * 

One of the most comical witch prosecutions took 
place in 1474 against a diabolical rooster who had been 
so presumptuous as to lay an egg. The poor creature 
was solemnly tried, whereupon he was condemned to 
die at the stake and publicly burned by order of the 
authorities of the good city of Basel. 

We abstain from entering further into the details 
of the prosecution of witches, which gradually devel- 
oped into a systematic business involving great emol- 
uments to judges, torturers, hangmen, inquisitors, 
denouncers, witnesses, and all persons connected with 
the process. It is a doleful work to go over the mere 
statistics of the autos-da-fe, and every single story of 
a trial for witchcraft cannot but rouse our deepest in- 
dignation ; and even now the belief in witchcraft is 
not yet extinct among the so-called civilised races of 


Dr. Oswald's article ' ' Fighting Fire " reminds us of a passage 
in the Vattaka Jataka (translated by T. W. Rhys Davids in Bud- 
dhist Birth Stories, p. 303). When the disciples of the Buddha 
were surrounded by a jungle fire they called out : " Let us make 
a counterfire, so that the conflagration shall not spread beyond 
the space burned out by that." When the fire reached the spot 
where the Buddha stood it went out like a torch thrust down into 

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NOTES 4884 


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The fundamental nature of the primary Indian re- 
ligion, surviving from the very remotest antiquity and 
rising to the surface of the Vedic times as a more or 
less ruinous wreckage, is, as we have seen, essentially 
that of the savage's religion. According to this, all 
existence appears animated with spirits, whose con- 
fused masses crowd upon each other, buzzing, flock- 
ing, swarming along with the phantom souls of the 
dead, and act, each according to its nature, in every 
occurrence. If a human being fall ill, it is a spirit 
that has taken possession of him and imposes upon 
him his ills. The patient is cured by enticing the spirit 
from him with magic. A spirit dwells in the flying 
arrow. He who shoots off an arrow performs a bit of 
magic which puts this spirit into action. The spirits 
have sometimes human, sometimes animal form. 
Neither form is nobler or lower than the other, for as 
yet no distinction between the human and bestial na- 
ture has been made. In fact, man is usually looked 
upon as descended from the animal; the tribes of men 
are called bears, wolves, snakes, and the individuals 
of the animal genus after which they are thus called 
are treated by the tribes as their blood-relations. 

As they move hither and thither, the spirits may 
select a domicile, abiding or temporary, in some vis- 
ible object. A feather, or a bone, or a stone at differ- 
ent times holds the spirit ; and anon the spirit steals 
into a human being whom it makes ill or throws into 
convulsions in which supernatural visions come to 
him and in which the spirit talks through him in con- 
fused phrases. 

And just as man at this stage of development lives 
only for the moment, thrown unresistingly to and fro 
by all sorts of vacillatory influences, such naturally is 
the way of the spirits. The spirits of savages are 
themselves savages, greedy, superstitious, easily ex- 
citable. The man of skill, the magician, who as yet 
occupies the place filled at a later period by the priest, 
knows the art — first anticipatory hints of a cult — of 
flattering the spirits ; he understands how to bar their 
passage, to terrify them, to deceive them, to compel 
them, to provoke them against his enemy. They are 

1 Authorised translation from the Deutsche Rundschau by O. W. Weyer. 

washed away with water ; they are consumed by fire ; 
even the friendly spirits, whenever they prove themselves 
intractable, are subjected to the same sort of irreverent 
treatment. It is apparent that this religion knows of 
nothing possessing a majesty which at all rises above 
the level of human life. An appreciation, an estimate 
of differences of magnitude and of degree have not as 
yet been formed. Animal, man, spirit, are mixed up 
together, all more or less equal in their power and in 
their rights. 

But gradually the chaos of these ideas clarifies. 
The great begins to separate itself from the little, the 
noble from the base. A calmer survey of the world 

Out of all the confusion of forces working in the 
shape of spirits, the great powers of nature more and 
more emerge and assume the first position. Their 
action, reaching far beyond human control into the 
farthest regions of space, the same to-day as yesterday 
and to-morrow as to-day, invincible to all human op- 
position, is ever more felt to be decisive of destinies ; 
— the more so, as the various branches of human in- 
dustry (cattle breeding and agriculture) make im- 
provement and intensify man's sensitiveness to the 
favorable and unfavorable phenomena of nature. It is, 
therefore, the normal characteristic of vast stretches 
of historical development that the great powers of 
nature, such as the heavens, sun, moon, storm, thun- 
der, and with these the terrestrial element of fire and 
the earth itself (usually first in importance in this 
class), appear as the highest givers of blessings and 
rulers of all that happens. They are superior to man 
and are at a distance from him, as befits divinity. For 
the embodiment of them into a living personification, 
the more perfect form of man steadily secures the pref- 
erence over that of the brute. It was only possible 
to deify the torpid brute so long as man failed to feel 
himself as something better than the brute. 

Of course the animal figure does not disappear ab- 
solutely and at a single blow from the midst of the 
divinities. Subordinate divinities, standing in the 
background and thus remaining untouched by the 
ennobling tendencies, were allowed to retain their old 
animal form. Or, an animal, which was once itself a 
god, might, after the god had been exalted to the dig- 



nity of human form, remain to the latter as a special 
attribute, as a sort of celestial domestic animal, — as, 
for illustration, demons which were once of the shape 
of horses, being raised to gods with the shape of man, 
would thereafter appear as riding upon celestial horses. 
Or, some part of the body of the original animal form 
might be retained as a part of the newer human form 
of the god, or something emblematic of the animal be 
affixed externally in some way, and thus retain a trace 
of the old conception which had been overthrown. 
And wherever a plastic art has developed established 
forms, as in Egypt or in Mexico, and is consequently 
strongly conservative in retaining venerable traditions, 
the animal-gods, cut in stone, may expect to maintain 
themselves for a longer time than they could wher- 
ever, as was the case in India in the time of the Veda, 
they lived in the airy realm of the imagination. 

In the same manner, the practice of considering 
stone and wood as fetishes embodying the spirits, 
while not disappearing suddenly and wholly, yet un- 
avoidably withdraws from the foreground. The spook- 
ish, magical conception of spirits slipping stealthily 
from one home to another in matter of every shape 
and kind loses ground. The figures of the divinities 
obtain surer forms, each with peculiar outlines of its 
own, and their dignity, at once human and super- 
natural, is firmly established. Though far from ap- 
proaching to that ideal of sanctity to which a later 
age will attain ; though they are still animated by 
egotism, passions, caprices of every sort, — yet, ac- 
companying it all, a certain amount of constancy be- 
comes manifest in them, and in all their doings there 
is evident the steady growth of connected deliberation 
and plan. Very often the tendency develops of trans- 
fering to these divinities the role of kindly dispensers 
of bounties, while, on the other hand, the occupation 
of doing injury, of causing illness and harm of every 
sort is still allotted to inferior demons, gnomes, goblin 
spirits, which in their essentials keep on a level with 
sorcery of the earlier religion and against which the 
old arts of spell and exorcism are effective, — arts, 
which, be it observed, are of no avail against the 
higher power of the new great divinities. 

The intercourse of man with these new gods at- 
tunes itself to another key. He is studious to gratify 
the immortals, powerful beings, willingly inclining 
themselves to favor, when approached with gifts. He 
invites them to food and drink and they yield to his 
solicitation ; not, however, with the bluster and din 
of the spirits exorcised by the old sorcerers, but in 
calm grandeur the invisible gods approach their ador- 
ers. The distinctive seal, now stamped upon cult, is 
henceforth and for long periods of time sacrifice and 

It is at this point that it becomes clear what the 

proper position of the Vedic religious belief is. Not 
all perhaps, but yet all the chief and dominant of the 
Vedic divinities are based upon a personification of 
natural forces, in forms of superhuman magnitude. 
The dwelling-place of the most of them is the atmos- 
phere or the heavens. The word devas (the god), 
which the Indians had received from the Indo-Ger- 
manic past and which is to be found among many of 
the related branches of the family ,1 meant originally 
"the heavenly one." And thus the belief, which ele- 
vates the divinities above human kind to a heavenly 
height, was firmly fixed and long antedates the times 
of the Veda. 

From it all, we see at the first glance that we are 
dealing with a stage of development which must have 
been preceded by a long prior history. And we find a 
confirmation for such a view, which, as was explained 
above, might be expected in a case of this kind : the 
types of divinities, or rather of spirits, characteristic 
of more primitive stages of development, are profusely 
apparent throughout the world of Vedic divinities. The 
divinities themselves — heavenly human beings, exalted 
to a colossal magnitude, in agreement with the gen- 
eral religious thought of the Vedic age — retain numer- 
ous, not wholly obliterated, marks of their ancient ani- 
mal form. Demons of animal shape, like "the serpent 
from the earth," "the one-footed goat," surround the 
world of man-resembling divinities, and form a back- 
ground for them. And the gods themselves are, in 
certain rites, — although exceptionally, as may be im- 
agined, — represented fetish-like as embodied in ani- 
mals, sometimes too in inanimate objects. A steed 
represents Agni, the fleet god of fire ; an ox, Indra, 
who is strong as one. 

Further, there are plain relics visible in the Veda 
of the belief so characteristic of the savage races : the 
belief in the blood-relationship between certain human 
families and certain animal species. 

Again, in India as elsewhere, there appear along 
with the grand divinities, which are mainly beneficent 
and are raised by the advance of thought to purer 
forms, those spirits by which the savage imagines he 
is encircled. They are those cobolds, malicious spir- 
its, spirits of illness, which we may say belong to the 
Stone Age of religion, which are obdurate to any his- 
torical growth, and yet are found with the same char- 
acteristics among all peoples ; gliding about in human 
and animal forms and misshapes — by day and by night, 
but especially night — everywhere, but with a marked 
partiality for cross-roads, grave-yards, and other such 
dismal places ; stealing into man, cheating him, con- 
fusing his mind, gnawing at his flesh, sucking up his 

iThus, Latin; divus, deus. Ancient Gallic: devo-, diva-. Lithuanian: 
dczias. old Prussian; dehuas. Ancient Norse (in which, according to rules 
of consonantal change, t instead of d appears) : Uvar, the gods. 



blood, waylaying his women, drinking up the milk of his 
cows. And finally, along with these spirits, and charac- 
teristic of the same primitive notions, there appear, in 
the belief of the Veda the souls of the dead, — those of 
ancestors kindly watching over the destinies of their 
children, — and treacherous, inimical souls : a domain 
in which the Veda has retained in especial abundance, 
and scarcely concealed beneath the veil spread over 
them by its advanced ideas, the remains of a savage 
and most crude religious life. 

If we turn, now, from these survivals of a distant 
past, to the great divinities, which are characteristic- 
ally the figure-heads of the religion of the Veda, we 
shall find that the stage at which the work of deifying 
the powers of the air and of the heavens is usually ac- 
complished, has been quite appreciably passed. While 
these divinities, too, have sprung from early ideas of 
nature, the roots which they there struck have with- 
ered or are at least touched with incipient decay ; the 
original meaning taken from nature is either forgotten 
or misunderstood. The mightiest of the Vedic gods, 
Indra, was once the thunderer, who batters open the 
cloud-cliffs with his weapon of lightning and frees the 
torrents of rain ; — in the hymns of the Veda he has 
faded into the very different figure of the divine hei-o, 
physically strongest of the gods, the conferrer of vic- 
tories, he who performs all the most powerful feats and 
lavishes inexhaustible treasures. The Vedic poets do, 
indeed, tell that legend of Indra, which was once the 
legend of the thunder, of the slaying of the serpent 
and the opening of the cliff ; but in their recital it is 
all distorted. The cliff, which Indra's weapon splits, 
is no longer the cloud, but a literal terrestrial cliff ; 
and the rivers which he releases are actual terrestrial 
rivers. The conception of thunder has thus wholly 
disappeared from the myth of Indra and there has 
only remained the story that the strongest of the gods 
had split a wall of rock with his marvellous weapon 
and that the streams had poured forth from it. 

The same process of fading out has befallen a num- 
ber of other of these great natural divinities. The two 
Asvin, the Dioskuroi of the Greeks, have lost their 
meaning of morning and evening star. In the Vedic 
creed their essential characteristic is that they are the 
deliverers of the oppressed from all kinds of suffering. 
Varuna, in his original character a lunar divinity, was 
transformed into that of a heavenly king, the observer 
and punisher of all sins ; and the single characteristic, 
that he is the divine ruler of the night, alone shows 
an obscure mark of his long-forgotten real nature. 



The criticism of my article on the " Monroe Doc- 
trine in 1895 " in a previous number of The Open Court, 

by Prof. Calvin Thomas in the number of the same 
journal of April 25, indicated two things. First, that 
time and space were not wasted in enumerating some 
of the A, B, C's of Republicanism ; and second, how 
easily an American citizen may lose sight of them 
when confronted with the many good things to be 
found in old Europe. Professor Thomas has well re- 
peated the reply which is usually given by the Euro- 
pean who is satisfied with the system under which he 
lives, and he displays the inability to meet his argu- 
ments which is too often found among Americans. 

The objections to monarchical institutions which 
I enumerated are little more than a repetition of those 
which Samuel the Judge presented to the Hebrews 
long ages ago when they demanded a king. The ob- 
jections appear to many people to be sound to this 
day, and they cannot be disposed of so readily as Pro- 
fessor Thomas seems to think by the curious assump- 
tion that the people who live under monarchies neces- 
sarily prefer them ; and further, that if they prefer 
them therefore they ought to have them. 

In dealing comprehensively with a large subject 
one has to use generalities. Professor Thomas very 
properly asks for more exact definitions. These I will 
endeavor to give, but concisely, since much time and 
space can be devoted to such an inspiring theme. 

First he asks, "What are human rights?" To 
this I would reply, the right to pursue a coiirse of pro- 
gressive evolution tvithout obstruction by unnecessary ob- 
stacles. Among primitive peoples with small rational 
capacity, it is possible that aristocratic establishments, 
as "royal families, aristocracies, and State Churches " 
may be aids to this progressive evolution, but of this 
I am by no means sure. The military despotism is 
the primitive form of government, and from this the 
republic might emerge without the intervening aristo- 
cratic and monarchical stages, but as a matter of fact 
it has not generally done so. The military freebooters 
have divided the land with their friends, and have 
enacted laws granting them monopolistic and other 
privileges, and thus gave origin to the privileged 
classes referred to in my article. Professor Thomas 
finds it unpleasant that I should call these classes 
"robbers," and refers to the Archbishop of Canter- 
bury and other estimable gentlemen who are now en- 
joying the privileges so acquired by their ancestors. 
(He forgets that I used the word ancestors in my ar- 
ticle). There is no doubt that many of the privileged 
classes of Europe are excellent people, just as many 
of the old-time slaveholders of the South were real 
gentlemen. But this does not excuse the systems un- 
der which they live or lived, nor does it excuse Pro- 
fessor Thomas now, nor did it excuse Clement Vallan- 
digham during the war of the rebellion, for taking so 
superficial a view of the situation. 



But to look further into the subject; do "royal 
families, aristocracies, and State Churches" obstruct 
human evolution ? By obstruction of evolution, I 
mean the hindrance of correct, i. e., logical or just 
thinking; hindrance of ethical conduct; and hindrance 
of material prosperity of the greatest number. Here 
one has to remember that the different stages of evolu- 
tion may require different governmental forms. What 
is good for a primitive people is certainly not good for 
a fully developed people ; and what is good for the 
latter will not be adapted to a degenerate people. 
This language implies that human evolution depends 
primarily on conditions other than forms of govern- 
ment ; and this is a truism. The rise and fall of hu- 
man excellence depends on conditions some of which 
are not as yet understood, but social relations are 
among those which are fundamental. The mainte- 
nance of ideals is of first importance, and sex and the 
family are primary sources of ideals. But superposed 
on this foundation, the governmental system has much 
to do with accelerating or retarding human evolution. 

In all nations we have primitive, developed and 
degenerate persons and families, but the percentages 
differ with the nations. It is easy to perceive that the 
peasantry of Europe is not a developed type, what- 
ever they may be. Perhaps most of them are primi- 
tive ; some of the lower classes from the cities are de- 
generate. Why do they continue to exist in such 
millions on a continent which is the home of mod- 
ern civilisation and which has had for centuries the 
benefits of "royal families, aristocracies, and State 
Churches " ? It is not because they are incapable of 
development ; for when transplanted to America in a 
generation or two one would not know them as the 
same people. Most of them undergo a development 
of the intelligence which is remarkable, and from a 
generally stupid, and often a besotted condition, they 
become industrious and relatively temperate. Their 
condition in Europe is evidently not due to isolation, 
as is sometimes to be found in out-of-the-way places 
in America, for they live in more or less dense socie- 

The opportunities offered to industry by the open- 
ing up of a new country has much to do with the rapid 
improvement to be seen in the European immigrants 
who come to us. The question arises, why should 
they not find similar opportunities in Europe? Eu- 
rope is not over-populated. Large tracts are unin- 
habited. Why are not these vacant lands occupied ? 
Because they belong to privileged classes. Hence in- 
dustry is depressed, and the people are poor. Why 
are the ideals of these peoples so low ? Because the 
ideal of excellence is artificial and false. Excellence 
is conferred by title and to a limited degree only by 
merit. In ninety men out of a hundred in Europe ad- 

mission to the ranks of the nobility would be more 
valued than intellectual or ethical superiority. In 
spite of this, the true excellence presses the false hard 
in Europe today, but it has had a long and severe 
struggle, and it has not yet penetrated the masses. If 
some of the privileged classes are aiding in this pro- 
gress it is because they see that it is inevitable, and 
they have risen to the situation. But that does not 
make their system a good one. 

Much European progress may be traced to Amer- 
ica. We have shown that the status of the peasant is 
not necessarily a permanent one. The development 
of the lowest classes of Europe on American soil has 
been an object lesson to both extremes of European 
society. The influence of this lesson on Europe must 
not be lost sight of. If Europe had possessed free in- 
stitutions after the downfall of Rome, would the long 
stagnation of the Middle Ages have been possible? 
Possibly the people did not wish to create and sus- 
tain such institutions, but that does not make the sit- 
uation any better, or the Dark Ages less dark. 

We are perhaps now in shape to see wherein the 
republican form of government is best. By a repub- 
lican form I mean a constitutional and representative 
form, without a "royal family, aristocracy, or State 
Church." In a republic the people can have laws 
made and executed which they believe to be of the 
greatest benefit to themselves, unhampered by the im- 
mense appropriations of money demanded by the aris- 
tocratic institutions enumerated, for the maintenance 
of their privileges ; unhampered by the false ideals 
created by those institutions ; and unhampered by the 
false and foolish standards of thought or conduct made 
authoritative by State Churches. So soon as gover- 
nors in a republic cease to represent the people who 
elect them, they can be retired from office, and new 
men may take their places. In this last sentence lies 
the A, B, C of the republican system, and although 
everybody knows that such is the case, the article of 
Professor Thomas shows that it may be temporarily 
lost sight of. Bad rulers of European and other mon- 
archical countries cannot be easily retired from of- 
fice ! As to personal tyranny not being a serious mat- 
ter in Europe to day, as asserted by Professor Thomas; 
have we not imprisonments for Fesc-viajeste in Ger- 
many, and injustice of many kinds in Russia? In 
England a man is forbidden to marry a deceased wife's 
sister, and divorce can be had for one cause only. In 
fact, personal liberty prevails in Europe in proportion 
as their systems approach that of the United States. 
We are not free from evils here, but they have many 
additional ones in Europe. 

Professor Thomas's reference to industrial classes, 
rich people etc. in America, as "privileged classes" 
is simply dust-throwing. If the majority of the vo- 



ters in the United States think it to their interest to 
grant subsidies to any class, believing that they are 
thereby also voting advantage to themselves, such 
class does not come under the head of "privileged." 
If a man becomes rich by fair means, he is not thereby 
a "privileged" person. Every one is at liberty to do 
the same if he can. As to our "aristocracy" which 
monarchists are fond of extemporising for the sake of 
their argument, everybody knows that nothing of the 
kind exists in America. If undue respect is paid to 
the rich, it is a respect which has its foundation in re- 
spect for merit. The accumulation of money implies 
intelligence and industry, both highly respectable 
qualities. A certain amount of man-worship is nat- 
ural to humanity, and in a republican community it 
is more likely to be directed toward merit, than in any 
other social system. And the proper direction of hu- 
man admiration, is one of the most important factors 
in human evolution. 

In maintaining the Monroe Doctrine, we are not 
alone sustaining the South American Republics. That 
is a minor issue. We are guaranteeing to all settlers 
on American soil a republican form of government, 
providing they choose to maintain it. The American 
continent is henceforth open to all nations, the Teu- 
tonic as much as the Latin, who desire this form of 
government. Probably the English and German peo- 
ples will be as much the beneficiaries of our action as 
the Spanish Americans ; perhaps even more so, for it 
is the Teutonic peoples who are populating America 
most rapidly. We certainly do not wish a quarrel 
with England, our nearest of kin among the nations. 
But we may sometimes influence her rulers for good, 
and when they are deaf we may speak loudly. Presi- 
dent Cleveland will occupy an enviable place in his- 
tory for the position he took in this matter. The char- 
acter of the issue cannot be belittled by contempt- 
uous references to Venezuelan swamps. We have 
more personal friendships with English people than 
with any other, and to insist on their respecting re- 
publican institutions in America is to do them good 
and not evil. England will scarcely go to war with 
us for such an act. She may be some day a republic 
herself. Professor Thomas's reference to Canada is 
then probably irrelevant, but as he does so, I will do 
so also. We have with that country a frontier of four 
thousand miles in length. Under such circumstances 
the chance of war at some future day is considerable. 
To avoid such a probable contingency, a fusion of the 
two countries is desirable. Prof. Goldwin Smith is 
right in stating that we are not a land-hungry people. 
We do not want Canada or Mexico. But it is mani- 
festly to the advantage of both countries that Canada 
and the United States should be peaceably united. 
And why not ? We are one in race and in language. 

Our separation is like the separate occupation of the 
same house by two brothers. 

I must not fail to refer to the fact that the per- 
manence of republican institutions depends on the 
character of the people. If the people fall below a 
practicable level of rational self-restraint, through de- 
generacy of their intelligence and excess of their pas- 
sions, the republican form of government must be 
soon supplanted by the military. It has been tem- 
porarily so replaced at certain times and places in our 
past history. We should then guard the franchise 
with greater care than we have done. We must put 
a stop to the unspeakable folly of permitting the half- 
civilised hordes of Europe to vote at our elections. 
Most of the evils which have befallen this country are 
to be traced to this source. The civil war would prob- 
ably have never been fought, had it not been for the 
ignorant foreign vote of the North which allied itself 
with the Southern slaveholders. These people furnish 
most of the purchasable vote which corrupts our poli- 
tics. It is to be hoped that Congress will speedily 
pass a good bill for restricting immigration ; and that 
all the States will adopt an amendment to their con- 
stitutions imposing some qualification for voting. Un- 
less this is done we may be thrown back on the sys- 
tems of government which these people have made 
more or less necessary in Europe. 



"The secret of Genius is to suffer no fic- 
tion to \\\e."—Coelke. 

Theologians had so choked the human mind with 
a dense undergrowth of dogmas that it was like cut- 
ting through an African forest, such as Stanley en- 
countered — to find the paths of truth. 

On that path, when found, many things unforeseen 
before, became plain. The sirens songs of orthodoxy 
were discovered to have strange discords of sense in 

1. The guide of God seemed to be very human — not 
authentic, not consistent — containing things not read- 
able nor explainable in the family ; containing pagan 
fictions, such as the Incarnation and reluctantly believ- 
able as the device of a moral deity. Men of genius 
and of noble ethical sympathy do however deem it 
defensible. In any human book the paternal exaction 
of such suffering as fell to Christ, would be regarded 
with alarm and repugnance. Wonder was felt that 
Scripture, purporting to contain the will of deity, 
should not be expressed so unmistakably that igno- 
rance could not misunderstand it, nor perversity mis- 
construe it. The gods know how to write. 

2. The origin of all things has excited and dis- 
appointed the curiosity of the greatest exploring minds 
of every age. That the secret of the universe is un- 



disclosed, is manifest from the different and differing 
conjectures concerning it. The origin of the universe 
remains unknowable. What awe fills or rather takes 
possession of the mind which comprehends this ! The- 
ism takes wonder out of the universe. 

3. Pleasant and free from anxiety, life would be 
were it true, that Providence is a present help in the 
day of need. Alas, to the poor it is evident that Prov- 
idence does not interfere, neither to befriend the good 
in their distress, nor arrest the bad in the act of crime. 

4. The power of prayer has been the hope of the 
helpless and the oppressed in every age. Every man 
wishes it was true that help could be had that way. 
Then every just man could protect himself at will 
against his adversaries. But experience shows that 
all entreaty is futile to induce Providence to change 
its universal habit of non-intervention. Prayer be- 
guiles the poor but provides no dinner. Mr. Spurgeon 
said at the Tabernacle that prayer filled his meal 
barrel when empty. I asked that he should publish 
the recipe in the interests of the hungry. But he made 
no reply. 

5. There is reason to think that original sin is 
not anything more than original ignorance. The be- 
lief in natural depravity discourages all efforts of pro- 
gress. The primal imperfection of human nature is only 
effaceable by knowledge and persistent endeavor. Even 
in things lawful to do, excess is sin, judged by human 
standards. There may be error without depravity. 

6. Eternal perdition for conscientious belief, 
whether erroneous or not, is humanly incredible. The 
devisors of this doctrine must have been unaware that 
belief is an affair of ignorance, prejudice, custom, 
education, or evidence. The liability of the human 
race to eternal punishment is the foundation on which 
all Christianity (except Unitarianism) rests. This 
awful belief, if acted upon with the sincerity that 
Christianity declares it should be, would terminate all 
enjoyment, and all enterprise would cease in the world. 
None would ever marry. No persons, with any hu- 
manity in their hearts would take upon themselves the 
awful responsibility of increasing the number of the 
damned. The registrar of births would be the most 
fiendish clerk conceivable. He would be practically 
the secretary of hell. The theory that all the world 
was lost through a curious and enterprising lady, eat- 
ing an apricot or an apple, and that three thousand or 
more years after, mankind had to be redeemed by the 
murder of an innocent Jew — is of a nature to make 
men afraid to believe in a deity accused of contriving 
so dreadful a scheme. 

Though this reasoning will seem to many an argu- 
ment against the existence, whereas it is merely against 
the attributes of deity, ascribed to him by Christian- 
ity. If God be not moral, in the human sense of the 

term, he may as well be not moral at all. It is only 
he whose principles of justice, men can understand, 
that men can trust. Prof. T. H. Huxley, conspicuous 
for his clearness of views and dispassionateness of 
judgment, was of this opinion, who says : " The sug- 
gestion arises, if God is the cause of all things he is 
responsible for evil as well as for good, and it appears 
utterly irreconcilable with our notions of justice that 
he should punish another for that which he has in fact 
done himself." The poet concurs with the philoso- 
pher when he exclaims : 

"The loving worm within its clod, 

Were diviner than a loveless God 

Amid his worlds. "' 

Christianity indeed speaks of the love of God in send- 
ing his son to die for the security of others. But not 
less is the heart of the intelligent and humane believer 
torn with fear, as he thinks what must be the charac- 
ter of that God who could only be thus appeased. The 
example of self-sacrifice is noble — but is it noble in 
any one who deliberately creates the necessity for it? 
The better side of Christianity seems overshadowed 
by the worse. 

7. Future life is uncertain, being unprovable and 
seemingly improbable, judging from the dependence 
of life on material conditions. Christians themselves 
do not seem confident of another existence. If they 
were su7-e of it, who of them would linger here when 
those they love and honor have gone before? Ere we 
reach the middle of our days, the joy of every heart 
lies in some tomb. If the Christian actually believed 
that the future was real, would he hang black plumes 
over the hearse, and speak of death as darkness ? No ! 
the cemeteries would be hung with joyful lights, the 
grave would be the gate of Paradise. Every one would 
find justifiable excuse for leaving this for the happier 
world. All tenets which are contradicted by reason 
had better not be. • 

Many preachers now disown, in controversy, these 
doctrines, but until they carry the professions of the 
platform into the statute book, the rubric and the pul- 
pit, such doctrines remain operant, and the Churches 
remain answerable for them. Non-conformists do not 
protest against a State Church on account of its doc- 
trines — which include all those enumerated. When 
the doctrines which conflict with reason and humanity 
are disowned by authority, ecclesiastical and legal, in 
all denominations, the duty of controverting them as 
impediments to progress will cease. 

It may be said in reply to what is here set forth as 
tenets of Christian Scripture, that the writer follows 
the letter and not the spirit of the word. Yes, that is 
what he does. He is well aware of the new practice 
of seeking refuge in the "spirit," of "expanding" the 

1 Browning. 



letter and taking a " new range of view." He however 
holds that to drop the "letter" is to drop the doc- 
trine. To "expand" the "letter" is to change it. 
New "range of view" is the term under which deser- 
tion of the text is disguised. But " new range " means 
new thought, which in this insidious way is put for- 
ward to supersede the old. The frank way is to say 
so, and admit that the "letter" is obsolete — is gone, 
is disproved and that new views which are truer con- 
stitute the new letter of progress. The best thing to 
do with the "dead hand " is to bury it. To try to ex- 
pand dissolution is but galvanising the corpse and 
tying the dead to the living. 


Witch prosecution was a convenient weapon in 
the hands of unscrupulous men for accomplishing 
crooked ends or satisfying some private vengeance. 
One of the most tragic and pathetic cases is the sad 
death of Agnes Bernauer, a beautiful woman, the 
daughter of a barber and the wife of Albrecht, Duke 
of Bavaria. 

Agnes was born at Augsburg in 1410. She was 
known as the fairest girl of the town, and she was as 
good and womanly as she was beautiful. In 1428 
Duke Ernest of Bavaria gave a great tournament in 
honor of his son Albrecht, whom his fond mother had 
endowed with the county Vohnburg. It was on this 
occasion that the young prince espied Agnes among 
the spectators and fell in love with her. Albrecht had 
been engaged to Elizabeth, a princess of Wiirttem- 
berg. But a few weeks before the day set for their 
marriage Elizabeth eloped with Count John of Wer- 
denberg. Albrecht was greatly disappointed, but be- 
ing convinced of the unworthiness of his bride, he 
seems to have consoled himself quickly enough. He 
made the acquaintance of Agnes Bernauer in Augs- 
burg and courted her ; but she was very coy and 
granted him not the slightest favor beyond the kind- 
ness which she showed to every one. He wooed her, 
won her heart and hand, and took her as his rightful 
wife to his residence in the county Vohnburg. There 
they lived in happy wedlock several years. 

Duke Ernest, Albrecht's father, knew about Agnes's 
presence at Vohnburg but he cared little, until he be- 
came anxious about having a legal heir to his duchy. 
Then he requested his son to marry the daughter of 
Duke Erik of Brunswick, but Albrecht refused, saying 
that his experience with the Wiirttemberg princess 
had taught him a lesson. 

When persuasion appeared to be without avail, 
Duke Ernest thought of other means to separate his 
son from the lowly-born maiden. At a public tourna- 
ment, he ordered the judges to refuse admittance to 
Albrecht on the plea that he had seduced an Augsburg 

maiden and kept her as his concubine at his castle of 
Vohnburg. Albrecht was indignant. He broke through 
the lines, placed himself in the centre of the lists and 
declared with a loud voice : "I did not seduce the 
girl ! Agnes Bernauer of Augsburg, who lives with 
me at Vohnburg, is my legal wife and joined to me for 
ever and ay by the blessing of the holy Church ! " A 
quarrel ensued and at last the young Duke was re- 
moved as a disreputable cavalier. Albrecht was greatly 
exasperated and as soon as he returned to Vohnburg 
he recognised Agnes not only as his wife but also as 
duchess. With the consent of his uncle, Duke Wil- 
liam, he moved to the castle Straubing, which he do- 
nated to her and surrounding her with a ducal court, 
called her henceforth Duchess Agnes. 

The poor Duchess did not enjoy the splendor of 
the court. She feared the wrath of her terrible father- 
in-law, and built, in a melancholy presentiment of her 
sad fate, her own burial chapel, in the monastery of 
the Carmelites at Straubing. 

It happened at that time, in 1435, that Duke Wil- 
liam, Duke Ernest's brother, died, and the little son 
of the deceased fell sick. Here was a chance to de- 
stroy the beautiful Agnes. In Albrecht's absence, 
Duke Ernest seized his son's wife, had her imprisoned 
and at once accused as a witch. Her defence was 
dignified, but in vain. She declared that no one ex- 
cept her husband and the Emperor could try her, and 
concluded with these words : "You may become my 
murderers — but never my judges. " Her condemnation 
had been decided upon before the trial began, and the 
verdict pronounced her guilty of having bewitched 
Duke Albrecht and thus committed a criminal offence 
against Duke Ernest. The judgment ordered her to 
be drowned in the Donau, and Duke Ernest signed the 

The hangmen carried the young woman to the 
Donau bridge at Straubing and thrust her, in the pres- 
ence of a multitude of spectators, into the river. But 
the current drifted her ashore and she held up her 
white arms appealing to the people for help. The 
people were moved and she might have been saved, 
had not one of the hangmen seized a pole and catch- 
ing her long golden hair held her under water until 
she expired. 

She was buried in St. Peter's cemetery of Strau- 

When the young Duke on his return was informed 
of the terrible death of his wife, he fainted. Then he 
swore vengeance, and in alliance with his cousin Duke 
Ludwig of Bavaria-Ingolstadt, began to wage a vigor- 
ous war against his own father. Through the media- 
tion of the Emperor, however, he was reconciled with 
his father at the council of Basel. Duke Ernest built 
a chapel over the grave of his innocent victim and 




had an annual mass read over her for the welfare of 
her soul. Duke Albrecht thereupon agreed to marry 
Anna, Princess of Brunswick, by whom he had ten 
children, although it cannot be said that his married 
life was a happy one. 

In 1447 Duke Albrecht had the body of "his hon- 
orable wife Agnes, the Bernauerin," transferred to the 
chapel which she had built for herself in the Carmelite 
monastery ; and he had the resting-place of her re- 
mains adorned with a beautiful marble image of her 
in full figure with the simple inscription : 

" Obiit Agnes Bernauerin, Requiescat in pace." 

It is difficult to say why Duke Albrecht did not on 
the tombstone call her duchess and his wife ; but this 
much is certain, her maiden name was nobler than the 
title which her husband had a right to bestow on her, 
and which he had inherited from his high-born but 
low-minded father. 

Poets who have immortalised her name, and the 
people of Bavaria among whom her memory is still 
Cherished, call her "the angel of Augsburg. "i p. c. 



To-day I gave the winds my soul 

To lull or waft at will ; 
And life was lapsed from Care's control 

To moods that throb and thrill. 

The dreamy heav'ns awakened hope, 

As beauty kindles love ; 
And fash'ning futures limned the scope 

Of brooding blue above. 

The Summer sent her herald-heats 

In zephyrs oversea ; 
And Fancy felt the pinion-beats 

Of swallows that shall be. 

Across the meads and thro' the woods 

A courier promise passed, 
That pierced the prison-solitudes 

Where flower-souls are fast. 

And all their wistful, wintry dreams 

Awoke within the seeds 
Of langorous life amid the themes 

The sheeny summer breeds. 

1 Folksong on Agnes die Pernawerin. Count Torring (1780), Biittger (1846), 
Melchior Meyr (1862), Friedrich Hebbel (1855), Otto Ludwig (a posthumous 
fragmentary design of a drama begun in 1852). See also Chr. Meyer's article 
on Agnes Bernauer in Die Gartenlauhe^ 1873, and KOnig, Ausgeburten des 

2 It is doubtful if the psychic condition indicated in these lines will be 
readily interpreted. All minds, I believe, experience a certain intuitional 
sense of the unity of the cosmos : not only a more or less rational credence in 
some monistic world-conception, but an experiential, though subtle, /^^//w^ 
of affinity with the All. There are moments with me when the subjective and 
objective seem to coalesce in tnedias res. Ego melts into ens entium. A sort 
of temporary Nirvana or Avidhaga state is established. 

Some such psychic abstraction as.this probably furnished the " ecstasies " 
of Plotinus and the religious mystics. Perhaps every introspective and psy- 
chically-sensitive mind has experienced such "beatific visions." The apper- 
ceptive and abstractive Aryan races cannot be strangers to these moments. 
Indeed certain of their Samadki Yoga practices would seem to superinduce 
just such psychoses. c. a. l. 

The prophet winds had caught the hints 

Of songs of birds unborn. 
And sunshine's prescience wrought the tints 

Of flowers by far hours worn. 

And, mingling with the milk-warm air 

And silence of the spring, 
I seemed a sentient ether rare, 

A wide and willess thing ; — 

An errant ecstasy arisen 

From some divinest Deep, 
Caught up as perfume flow'rs imprison 

When morn calls down the steep ; — 

A mood whose thought has lost the world. 

Its days and deeds and dreams, 
Till Care has all her passions furled. 

And Hope desireless seems. 

Oh ! rich and rare to mix and mingle 

With th' elemental play. 
And feel the multitudes are single 

Of earth's phenomena ! — 

To join in rapport strong and strange 
With Nature's moods and powers, 

And lose the weary pulse of change 
That throbs along the hours. 

Till, fusing life with Nature's soul, 

The self and world and mote. 
In raptures that are rest, enthrall 

Love's universal note. 

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" Zeal without knowledge is like expedi- 
tion to a man in the dark." — John Newton. 

Criticism in theology, as in literature, is with many 
an intoxication. Zest in showing what is wrong is apt 
to blunt the taste for what is right, which it is the true 
end of criticism to discover. Lord Byron said critics 
disliked Pope because he afforded them so few chances 
of objection. They found fault with him because he 
had no faults. The criticism of theology begets com- 
placency in many. There is a natural satisfaction in 
being free from the superstition of the vulgar, in the 
Church as well as out of it. No wonder many find 
abiding pleasure in the intellectual refutation of the 
errors of supernaturalism and in putting its priests to 
confusion. Absorbed in the antagonism of theology, 
many lose sight of ultimate utility, and regard error, 
not as a misfortune to be alleviated, so much as a fault 
to be exposed. Like the theologian whose color they 
take — they do not much consider whether their method 
causes men to dislike the truth through its manner of 
being offered to them. Their ambition is to make 
those in error look foolish. Free thinkers of zeal are 
apt to become intense, and like Jules Ferry (a late 
French premier), care less for power, than for con- 
flict, and the lover of conflict is not easily induced to 
regard the disproof of theolog}' as a means to an end> 
higher than itself. It is difficult to impart to uncalcu- 
lating zealots a sense of proportion. They dash along 
the warpath by their own momentum. Railway engi- 
neers find that it takes twice as much power to stop 
an express train as it does to start it. 

When I first knew free thought societies they were 
engaged in Church-fighting — which is still popular 
among them, which has led the public to confuse criti- 
cism with Secularism, an entirely different thing. 

Insurgent thought exclusively directed, breeds, as 
is said elsewhere, a distinguished class of men — among 
scholars as well as among the uninformed — who have 
a passion for disputation, which like other passions 
" grows by what it feeds upon." Yet a limited number 
of such paladins of investigation are not without uses 

1 Buckle truly says, " Liberty is n 
the uses of liberty are means to ends 

is an end in itself.' 
Else why do we want liberty ? 

in the economy of civilisations. They resemble the 
mighty hunters of old, they extirpate beasts of prey 
which roam the theological forests, and thus they ren- 
der life more safe to dwellers in cities, open to the 
voracious incursions of supernaturalism. 

Without the class of combatants described, in whom 
discussion is irrepressible, and whose courage neither 
odium nor danger abates — many castles of supersti- 
tion would never be stormed. But mere intellectual- 
ism generates a different and less useful species of 
thinkers, who neither hunt in the jungles of theology 
nor storm strongholds. We all know hundreds in every 
great town who have freed themselves, or have been 
freed by others, from ecclesiastical error, who remain 
supine. Content with their own superiority (which 
they owe to the pioneers who went before them more 
generous than they") they speak no word, and lend no 
aid towards conferring the same advantages upon such 
as are still enslaved. They affect to despise the ig- 
norance they ought to be foremost to dissipate. They 
exclaim in the words of Goethe's Coptic song : 

■ ' Fools from their folly 'tis hopeless to stay, 

Mules will be mules by the laws of their mulishness, 
Then be advised and leave fools to their foolishness. 
What from an ass can be got but a bray." 

These Coptic philosophers overlook that they would 
have been "asses" also, had those who vindicated 
freedom before their day, and raised it to a power, 
been as indifferent and as contemptuous as believers 
in the fool-theory are. Coptic thinkers forget that 
every man is a fool in respect of any question on which 
he gives an opinion without having thought independ- 
ently upon it. With patience you can make a thinker 
out of a fool ; and the first step from the fool stage is 
accomplished by a little thinking. It is well to re- 
member the exclamation of Thackeray: "If thou hast 
never been a fool, be sure thou wilt never be a wise 

It is, however, but justice to some who join the 
stationariness, to own that they have fared badly on 
the warpath against error, and are entitled to the 
sympathy we extend to the battered soldier who falls 
out of the ranks on the march. Grote indicates what 
the severity of the service is, in the following passage 
from his "Mischiefs of Natural Religion":— "Of all 



human antipathies that which the behever in a God 
bears to the unbehever, is the fullest, the most un- 
qualified, and the most universal. The mere circum- 
stance of dissent envolves a tacit imputation of error 
and incapacity on the part of the priest, who discerns 
that his persuasive power is not rated so highly by 
others as it is by himself. This invariably begets dis- 
like towards his antagonist." 

Nevertheless it is a reproach to those whom mili- 
tant thought has made free, if they remain unmindful 
of the fate of their inferiors. Yet Christian churches, 
with all self-complacent superiority to which many of 
them are prone, are not free from the sins of indif- 
ference and superfineness. This was conspicuously 
shown by Southey in a letter to Sir Henry Taylor, in 
which he says : — ' ' Have you seen the strange book 
which Anastasius Hope left for publication and which 
his representatives, in spite of all dissuasion, have pub- 
lished? His notion of irnmortality and heaven is that 
at the consummation of all things he, and you, and I, 
and John Murray, and Nebuchadnezzar, and Lambert 
the fat man, and the Living Skeleton, and Queen 
Elizabeth, and the Hottentot, Venus, and Thutell, 
and Probert, and the Twelve Apostles, and the noble 
army of martyrs, and Genghis Khan and all his ar- 
mies, and Noah with all his ancestors and all his pos- 
terity, — yea, all men, and all women, and all children 
that have ever been, or ever shall be, saints and sin- 
ners alike, are all to be put together and made into 
one great celestial, eternal human being ... I do not 
like the scheme. I don't like the notion of being 
mixed up with Hume, and Hunt, and Whittle Harvey, 
and Philpotts, and Lord Althorp, and the Huns, and 
the Hottentots, and the Jews, and the Philistines, and 
the Scotch, and the Irish. God forbid ! I hope to be 
I, myself, in an English heaven, with you yourself, — 
you and some others without whom heaven would be 
no heaven to me." 

Most of these persons would have the same dislike 
to be mixed up with Mr. Southey. Lord Byron would 
not have been enthusiastic about it. The Comtists 
have done something to preach a doctrine of humanity, 
and to put an end to this pitiful contempt of a few 
men for their fellows, — fellows who in many respects 
are often superior to those who despise them. 

All superiority is apt to be contemptuous of inferi- 
ors, unless conscience and generosity takes care of it, 
and incites it to instruct inferior natures. The prayer 
of Browning is one of noble discernment: — 
" Make no more giants, God — 
But elevate the race at once." 

Even free thought, so far as it confines itself to it- 
self, becomes stationary. Like the squirrel in its cage: 

" Whether it turns by wood or wire, 
Never gets one hair's breadth higher." 

If any doubt whether stationariness of thought is 
possible, let them think of Protestantism which climbed 
on to the ledge of private judgment three centuries 
ago — and has remained there. Instead of mounting 
higher and overrunning all the plateaus of error above 
them, it has done its best to prevent any who would 
do it, from ascending. There is now, however, a new 
order of insurgent thought of the excelsior caste which 
seeks to climb the heights. Distinguished writers 
against theology in the past have regarded destructive 
criticism as preparing the waj' to higher conceptions 
of life and duty. If so little has been done in this 
direction among working class thinkers, it is because 
destructiveness is more easy. It needs only indigna- 
tion to perfect it, and indignation requires no effort. 
The faculty of constructiveness is more arduous in ex- 
ercise, and is later in germination. More men are 
able to take a state than to make a state. Hence Sec- 
ularism, though inevitable as the next stage of mili- 
tant progress, more slowly wins adherents and appre- 



"There is no Death in the concrete : that 
which passes away, passes away into its 
own self; only the passing away passes 
away. ' ' — Hegel. 

Mainly in correspondence with our view of human 
personality will be found our estimate of immortality 
— of what immortality, for mankind, really is, and 
means. Traditional religionism, in this connexion, 
was content with nothing less than the veritable resur- 
rection of the flesh, in the case of the human organ- 
ism — looked forward to the day and hour when this 
corruptible shall put on incorruption, and this mortal 
shall put on immortality; when the sea shall give up 
its dead, and the dust and ashes of the grave reas- 
semble in living form once more. "I believe in the 
resurrection of the body — literally, of the flesh — and 
the life everlasting," are clauses in the most ancient 
symbol of the Christian faith. 

Gradually this belief weakened, mainly on account 
of its inherent contradictions. Common sense, in 
course of time, asserted the view, that the self-same 
corporeal particles in their turn play many parts, pass 
from one organism to another, in the ordinary course 
and flux of the material, and that atom and molecule, 
from the dawn of life on this planet, had helped to 
build up unnumbered individuals. Imperial Caesar, 
dead and turned to clay, might not only stop a hole to 
keep the wind away, but might in turn go to form, 
inter alia multa part of the organism of the veriest 
clown. Clearly, then, since no man can claim exclu- 
sive rights in his corporeal elements, he could not 
reasonably expect to have the sole title to them at the 
resurrection. Latter-day Christianity, thus worsted, 




generally retreats upon Paul's dictum that, though it 
is a "natural body " which is sown in the tomb, it is 
a "spiritual body" which is to be raised at the last 
day. And, though no one knows exactly what a "spir- 
itual body" is, or rather as the phrase may mean any- 
thing or nothing, the explanation passes muster in or- 
thodox circles to this day. 

The conception of modern scientific religion is of 
a different character altogether, as was to be expected 
from its views upon the subject of personality. In 
this view, to quote George Eliot, "we live again in 
lives made better [and, it might be added, worse] by 
our presence," but not otherwise. Our iarma — the 
dynamic of our egoity — passes on to future genera- 
tions. Thus, and thus only, do we survive. As we 
are, in some sort, the heirs of all behind us in the past, 
so, in the same way, we are the progenitors of all be- 
fore us in the future. As Hudor Genone puts it in 
his recent article, ^ there is, in this view, a threefold 
immortality, respectively, of matter, of force, and of 

Such are some of the replies which have been made 
to the old question — If a man die, shall he live again? 

Personally, I believe that none of these views con- 
tain the whole truth, but that each envisages the truth 
fractionally. And this, although I am well aware that 
my own view of the subject is colored with an aspect 
of personality which is not in accord either with Chris- 
tian traditionalism, or with the enlightened views of 
the editor of this journal. 

I may perhaps be allowed to argue, however, that 
human immortality, viewed broadly, is a persistence 
of life, somehow, beyond the grave and gate of death 
— in other words, an everlasting life. Christianity af- 
firms this of the soul, clothed upon with a spiritual 
body at the resurrection. Modern scientific religion 
denies it in the case of the / of personal conscious- 
ness, but affirms it in the case of what it calls the true 
/ — the individual karma. 

Now it may be asked. Why should this / of the 
personal consciousness — physical or psychical — die at 
all? However illusory this idea of the / may seem 
upon close analysis, it is there ; as an idea it is insis- 
tent, unmistakable ; why should it end, seeing that 
nothing else that we know of ends, but that every- 
thing, on the contrary, persists and perdures? We are 
told, however, that this — both as idea and as reality — 
passes away, when nothing else passes away — that it 
alone is something which is destined to die without 
hope of resurrection, leaving only the shadow of its 
effect behind. Curious, if true. But is it true ? 

Strangely inchoate are popular ideas of infinity and 
eternity! For the most part the former is modelled on 
the lines of mathematical infinity, with which infinity, 

1 " Scientific Immortality," The Open Court, No. 393, March 7, 1895. 

in the sense of everlastingness, has little or nothing in 
common. Yet some persons talk almost glibly of in- 
finity. As Felix Holt says : "Your dunce, who can- 
not do his sums, always has a taste for the infinite." 
Mathematically, the infinite mainly suggests endless 
prolongation, as of a line, or series, infinitely contin- 
ued. Eternity, again, poses, with most, as a line 
stretching infinitely in the directions of past and fu- 
ture. Space is at the foundation of these concepts; 
they do not pertain primarily to time. Yet even in 
the spatial domain, the old idea of eternity was better. 
Its emblem was a circle, — something without begin- 
ning or ending, — a curve ever returning into itself. 
For, after all, the true note of infinity and eternity is 
not indefinite prolongation away from a given point in 
any direction, but recurrence, reiteration, repetition ! 

Nowadays it seems as if we may have to amend our 
concepts of space, and to familiarise ourselves with 
the possibility of space being boundless, but not infi- 
nitely great — to accustom ourselves to the idea of a 
projectile fired into space possibly returning, after 
millions of years it may be, from precisely the oppo- 
site direction, to the point of departure. Here essen- 
tially is the idea of recurrence once more. The course 
of the material universe, as we believe it, is an orbit, 
elliptical or circular. What if immortality has its or- 
bit also? 

Doubtless, such an idea is one difficult to seize, so 
accustomed are we to associate what George Herbert 
terms "everlastingness " with the production of some- 
thing onwards and outwards, from now and here, on 
spatial or timal lines. The very clearest modern 
thinkers encourage the idea that a particular stage or 
point once past, say in the life-history of the human 
organism, it is forever over and done with, — never 
will, or can, occur again. The innate composition of 
this organism is, they admit, not a stable or constant 
quantity. On the contrary, it is continually inter- 
changing particles with its environment ; but there 
comes a time, they say, when this fluent vortex of as- 
sociation, which we call personality, disrupts and dis- 
solves — forever, and the bodily constituents go else- 
where, to form wholly new combinations, and to enter 
into new partnerships. The silver cord of the indi- 
vidual life, however, is forever loosed ; and the golden 
bowl irrevocably broken. And this view may be held 
without the smallest tincture of animism, without a 
particle of belief in the existence of an indwelling 
spirit, "returning unto God who gave it." It is sim- 
ply and solely a physical conception. My objection 
to it is, that it does not go far enough, or look far 
enough ahead. 

In the scientific conception of the conservation — 
or rather perduration — of matter, matter is looked 
upon as a fixed and definite quantity, neither to be 



increased nor diminished, undergoing, indeed, contin- 
ual metamorphosis and vicissitude, but nevertheless 
in amount unalterable. So in the case of the conser- 
vation of energy. The sum is constant. Nothing is 
thus lost, but everything persists and perdures. If so, 
we have only to set this persistence and perduration 
within the solvent of time, which is necessarily in- 
finite, to obtain a necessary recurrence, or repetition, 
of the self-same combinations.^ Time was, or is, when 
such a combination of material particles constitutes, 
or constituted, the living being we call a human per- 
sonality. It is not something like Pyrrhonism to doubt 
that what has been, or is now, may be — nay, must be 
again, by virtue of a law as unalterable as that by 
which the planet swings ; that, in an infinite series of 
atomic and molecular collocations, the self-same group- 
ing and arrangements must happen again and again, 
everlastingly; and that nothing, in this sense, passes 
away, except, as Hegel puts it, the "passing away" 
itself, but that everything endlessly recurs? The true 
alembic of infinity lies in the word repetition — re-birth, 
if you will. Recurrence of existence — 

"At last, far off, at last, to all "— 

is the true note of everlasting life ! 

In this sense, though a man die, he must, and 
shall, live again the self-same personal life. In a 
weirdly-significant sense of familiar words, he must be 
born again .' At his decease everything remains po- 
tentially unaltered, fit and able to reproduce him once 
more, though his dust be spread to the four winds, or 
whelmed in the deepest sea. Nothing that constitutes 
his being dies, though everything belonging to him 
suffers a sea-change. After unnumbered ages, innu- 
merable transformations, changes and chances count- 
less, once more the self- same combination occurs; 
once more, life's magic pinions and its wizard wheels 
resume the self-same round. The self-same life of the 
self-same personality is taken up once more. In the 
die-cast of infinity, all things are, not only possible, 
but inevitable. Not wholly vain, then, the affirma- 
tion " I believe in the resurrection of the body" — not 
wholly illusory, the tombstone-legend Resurgam ! 

Admittedly a speculation — one which most persons 
will consider a vainly fantastic one — I would only 
point out that it is one which, to some extent, fits in 
with modern scientific concepts. It is one which has 
also some notable corollaries. Consciousness, personal 
consciousness, can, in this view, be seen to appertain, 

1 Dr. Carus, in a former controversy with Mr. C. S. Peirce, remarks as 
follows : 

"The theory of probabilities teaches, that whatever can happen in th 
long course of an infinite number of events, actually will happen, and that 
whatever, according to the nature of things, has a greater probability, will 
in an infinite number of cases occur with proportionately greater frequency." 

He adds: "The lesson which we have to draw from this statement is, that 
that which we wish not to happen, should be made \m^05i\h\e."—The Motiist, 
Vol. III., No. 4, p. 598. 

not to the several ultimate constituents which go to 
build up the human organism, but only to their joint 
compound in organised form. And this, whatever 
value or import we assign to the bond of personality 
itself, ever constant amid the material flux. Con- 
sciousness again, — my own proper consciousness, — 
itself inalienable and untransferable, though thus sub- 
ject to recurrent intervals of practical oblivion — it may 
be for unnumbered aeons — would be, according to this 
view, practically continuous as regards itself. Such 
an idea, of course, runs counter to all our preposses- 
sions, but who would assert that consciousness, thus 
interrupted and broken in upon solely by ////conscious- 
ness, would be, for all intents and purposes, other 
than continuous ? 

Further, however, we cannot go. Speculation it- 
self drops its wing when urged to bolder flight. 
Whether memory would, or would not, play a part in 
such stupendous timal combinations of the material 
as those above alluded to, we cannot say. Whether 
such operations would be governed by the law of prob- 
ability, by quasi- chance, or indeed by chance abso- 
lute, cannot be determined. Whether the theatre of 
such transformations would be the universe in its to- 
tality, or a more restricted sphere, is equally a matter 
of speculation, while, as to the precise mode of our 
rebirth, of our re-entrance into our reversionary in- 
heritance of immortality, who can speak ? 

Yet all this does not weaken our persuasion ; it 
rather tends to strengthen it, feeling, as we do and 
must, that the problem of everlastingness must always 
be a matter mainly of speculation. The belief in the 
persistence of our karma rests also on a speculative 
basis. The view above stated, however, sheds an ad- 
ditional gleam of significance upon man's unappeasa- 
ble longing after immortality, — "the thoughts which," 
as Wordsworth says, "wake now to perish never," — 
and which nothing "can abolish or destroy." 

Death, " the crowned phantom, with all the equip- 
age of his terrors," is but a phantom after all — the 
shadow of a shade ! The grave is our bed, not our 
eternal home, for mortality is indeed swallowed up of 

O death, where is thy sting ? O grave, where is 
thy victory ? 


The greatest difficulty in the right comprehension 
of reality, it appears, lies in the recognition of the all- 
importance of form. Our very language is in many 
respects misleading, as most of its similes symbolise 
the formal in material allegories. For instance when 
we speak of the "substance" of a thing we do not 
mean the material of which it consists but the essen- 
tial and most important feature of its being. Thus the 



words "spirit," "animus" and "anima," "psyche," 
"atman," and others of the same kind mean breath 
or air, as though the soul consisted of a gaseous sub- 
stance, of ether, or of any matter at all ; and he who 
denies the substantiality of the soul is even to-day 
frequently regarded as denying the existence of the 
soul itself. 

Soul is not a mysterious substance, but the form 
of living organisms. The identity of the soul in the 
flux of matter depends upon the preservation of its 
peculiar and idiosyncratic form. Personality is in brief 
a resutne of all the antecedents, prenatal and other- 
wise, of a man's life-history. A living organism is 
nothing more nor less than a summation of innumera- 
ble memories, and memory is simply immortalised 

The action of every cell is conditioned partly by 
the stimuli of its surroundings, partly by its structure ; 
and the structure is the residuum which the past his- 
tory of the cell has precipitated upon sentiency. 
Every animated creature and every speck of living 
substance is an embodiment of its former experiences 
from its first beginnings. Every moment of time is 
fleeting, but every deed done, ever}' action performed, 
every kind of contact with the outer world experi- 
enced will persist ; they remain as traces constituting 
peculiar dispositions that upon proper stimulation can 
be revived. 

What am I ? I consist of a great number of activi- 
ties, physiological, mental, and emotional. A great 
part of these activities — especially the physiological 
functions of the various nutritive, sensory, and motor 
organs are hereditary, that is to say, they have origi- 
nated in the baby in the same way that the memories of 
a tree lie dormant in a bud, or as the acorn possesses 
the tendency of repeating the growth-process of the 
oaks of which it is a descendant. Another part of the 
activities has been impressed into this sentient system 
of hereditary activities by the example and words of 
other people and by the experiences made during life- 
time. I am the organised totality of these peculiar 
forms of life ; functions of the stomach, the sensory 
organs, the brain, and the muscles. I do not have 
them, I am all these. I do not possess my ideas, I 
am my ideas. I do not own aspirations, I consist of 
them, I am my aspirations. The ideals which I cher- 
ish are my actual self. 

As there is no cause without effect, so there is no 
soul-activity but leaves its trace, not only in its own 
organism, but also in its surroundings. And as the 
electric current in the telephone wire can reproduce 
the living voice of the speaker, as songs and speeches 
are preserved in the tin-foil and wax-cylinders of the 
phonograph, so our spoken, written, and printed 
words, our works of art, our good and evil deeds, in- 

deed all the various acts of life are like seals of our 
soul set upon the surrounding world, producing in its 
intricate relations such definite dispositions as are 
capable of reproducing again and again our very souls. 
Our life is more than a manifestation of ourselves; it 
is our own immortalisation. Every form of life is the 
continuance of the past. The past persists in the 
present form of life ; and in the same way the present 
will persist in the future. 

Mr. McCrie belongs to those authors who are not 
fettered by dogmatic influences of church or school, 
yet he still preserves a part of the materialistic preju- 
dice that we consist of a number of material particles. 
Should the same particles be reunited, then we shall 
live again, and this is held out as a distant hope of 
reversionary immortality, based upon the doctrine 
that the chance-combinations in a system of a defi- 
nite number of particles will at last be exhausted, and 
must, if the process continues, be repeated. Mr. 
McCrie's proposition, which (if we mistake not, was 
first suggested by Mr. Mill) suffers from the serious 
drawback that we do not know whether or not the 
universe consists of discrete units, be they atoms or 
vortices. On the other hand, our confidence in both 
the persistence of our soul and the resurrection of 
similar soul-forms is much better grounded than upon 
the hope of a reunion of the same particles of matter; 
it consists in the preservation of form and the re-cre- 
ation of the same forms that now constitute our being. 
So long as the intrinsic constitution of the universe 
remains the same — and it will remain the same if the 
necessity that lies at the bottom of all the laws of the 
cosmic order be at all immutable and eternal — : the 
world will produce the same kind of rational beings, 
whose hearts will be aglow with the same hopes and 
fears, loves and aversions, yearning for the same hap- 
piness, recognising like duties, restraining themselves 
by the same moral code, and finding comfort for their 
various afflictions and the transiency of their work in 
the same immortality based upon the recognition of 
the eternal identity of the immutable prototype of the 

A man is apt to be despondent when for the first 
time in his life he comprehends the full significance 
of the truth that the strength of our days is labor and 
sorrow ; but he will find comfort in the thought that 
his labor was not spent in vain and his life was worth 
living. Thus he naturally seeks for something that 
possesses a lasting value, and this desire is formulated 
in the idea of immortality ; yet it appears that there 
can be no great solace in the assurance of a mere pre- 
servation of our soul-forms, while the expectation of 
their continued usefulness is the greatest and noblest 
satisfaction we can have. 

The joy of Heaven and the bliss of Nirvana does 



not consist in pure existence, in passivity, but in 
achievement, in the activity of profitable work. It is 
not the being, but the doing. 

The value of the continuation of man's life-work 
and of his soul is not so much mere immortality but 
constant progress and evolution, it is further expan- 
sion and soul-epigenesis, an additional growth and 
an increase of application. 

The spiritual capital acquired is put to use, the 
form moulded to suit certain needs continues to serve 
as a model for further improvement ; and an impor- 
tant experience or a valuable invention becomes the 
conditions of the unlimited advance of a higher civili- 

Consider only the man who first bored holes into 
pieces of rolling tree-trunks and thus became the in- 
ventor of the wheel. Consider the inventor of the nee- 
dle, or the man who deepened the hollow tree and 
changed it into a boat. Their names are unknown, 
but the intelligence of these men still lives. There is 
no machinery but that peculiar thought-form which 
originated in the first wheelwright's mind, is present 
in it. No coat, no shoe is worn by us, but we ought 
to be grateful to the inventor of the needle. No ocean 
steamer is built but its builders are indebted to him 
who made the first skiff. 

It is not only the work of inventors that lives on, 
their soul-forms, too, are preserved in the minds of 
those who inherit the blessings of their labors. They 
are all here within us. 

The pristine genius of the forefathers of our race 
still vibrates through the brains of inventors to-day 
and constitutes there the elementary notions of me- 
chanics ; there it acquires consciousness, and contin- 
ues the struggle for conquering more and more of 
the forces of nature. 

Were not the life-work of the generations of the 
past their intellectual and moral qualities, the strength 
of the father and the tender love of the mother, con- 
stantly resurrected and reincarnated in our children, 
there would be no progress, no evolution, no advance 
to higher stages. 

Life may not be worth living to him who has the 
notion that he is an agglomeration of atoms and that 
his soul will be gone as soon as the material complex 
of which he at a given time consists be dissolved ; but 
life is worth living to him who comprehends his con- 
nexion with the past and knows whence his soul Com- 
eth ; for he will thereby learn whither it fareth. He 
will understand that in his future existence he will 
reap what he now sows ; he will act not from interests 
that are limited to the moments of his individual ex- 
istence ; it is the prospect of the enlarged sphere of 
influence in the life to come that will dominate his 
motives and guide his actions p. c. 



" When a hero of thought dies, his ideals 
remain with us. The body dies, but 
the soul lives." — Paul Carus.l 

Ralph Waldo Emerson, speaking with Wordsworth in 1848, 
talked of English national character. ' ' I told him, " writes Emer- 
son, "it was not creditable that no one in all the country knew 
anything of Thomas Taylor, the Platonist, whilst in every Amer- 
ican library his translations are found. I said, if Plato's Republic 
were published in England as a new book to-day, do you think it 
would find any readers ? He confessed it would not; 'and yet,' 
he added, after a pause, with that complacency which never de- 
serts a true-born Englishmen, ' and yet we have embodied it 
all. '"2 

Elsewhere, Emerson ranges Thomas Taylor among the great 
men " nature is incessantly sending up out of night to be his men " 
— Plato's men a " constellation of genius."' 

"To strain human curiosity to the utmost limits of human 
"credibility," wrote Isaac Disraeli, "a modern Plato has arisen 
"in Mr. Thomas Taylor, who consonant to the Platonic philos- 
' ' ophy , religiously professes Polytheism ! At the close of the eigh- 
" teenth century, be it noted, were published many volumes in 
' ' which the author affects to avow himself a zealous Platonist, and 
' ' asserts that he can prove that the Christian religion is a ' bastard- 
" ised and barbarous Platouism.' The divinities of Plato are the 
"deities to be adored, and we are to be taught to call God, Jupi- 
"ter; the Virgin, Venus ; and Christ, Cupid ! The Iliad of Homer 
"allegorised, is converted into a Greek Bible of the Arcana of 
"Nature!"'' In Vawien — a novel now forgotten — which appeared 
in 1797, the same Disraeli lampooned Taylor more or less objec- 
tionably. Posterity is often just in neglect or approbation — Vau- 
rien is a bookworm's faint memory; Thomas Taylor, who being 
dead yet speaketh, is just now demanding a meed of cultured in- 
terest, a century after the publication of the caricature. And 
apart from the accession of public interest in Taylor, created by 
the reproduction of some of his more important translations, the 
life of this rare and devoted scholar merits a tribute of memorial. 
Taylor wrote in the sheer love of learning, and for no other end 
than the passionate loyalty of the true scholar's soul, to faithfully 
interpret the message of his ancient redeemer to a forgetful gen- 
eration. He had no axes to grind, no logs to roll ; he wrote for 
philosophical, and not personal, interest, as a prophet serenely in- 
different to profit even when hunger gnawed his vitals. 

Thomas Taylor was born in London in 1758. His birth was 
humble, his inheritance weakness and disease. Symptoms of con- 
sumption were alarming at the age of six. Three years later he 
was sent to St. Paul's School to be educated for the Nonconform- 
ist ministry. Here his love of contemplation — his aversion to 
merely verbal disquisitions — was marked. One of his masters, 
Mr. William Ryder, whenever a sentence remarkably moral or 
grave chanced in any classic young Taylor was translating, would 
observe : ' ' Come, here is something worthy the attention of a phi- 
losopher ! " He was altogether precocious — discovered blunders in 
a Latin Testament, discovered that his talents were not for the min- 
istry, discovered that he was in love (with his future wife) within 
the first twelve years of his singular life. 

At the age of fifteen he was uncongenially employed by an ex- 
acting uncle-in-law, in the offices of Sheerness Dockyards. Thirst- 
ing for knowledge, resenting his slavery, he again complied with 
his father's hopes by consenting to be the pupil of a dissenting 
minister. " He studied Greek and Latin during the day, courted 

1 Truth in FictioH. 

2 English Traits, p. 166. 1856. 

s Representative Men, p. 18. 1850. 

i Curiosities 0/ Literature , " Modern Platonism." 



Miss Merton in the evening, and at 'night read Simson's Conic Sec- 
lions in the Latin edition." Before leaving for Aberdeen Univer- 
sity the young sweethearts decided to secretly marry and defer 
marital life till his education should be finished. This was dis- 
covered by the bride's mother, and, says one, the couple "had a 
bad time of it." The lady was intended for a brainless man of 
money — not a moneyless man of brains. Her father dying, left 
all help in the discretion of an illiberal relative. For eighteen 
months the couple lived on a shilling per diem. Taylor then ob- 
tained a situation as usher, and spent Saturday afternoons with 
his wife. Next a berth in Lubbock's Bank at /50 per year — paid 
quarterly — a story of struggle. Often Taylor fainted from want 
of food on reaching his home. Even then study was not neglected 
— far into the night he engaged himself with Becker's Physica Suh- 
terranea, and quadrature of the circle. Believing that he had 
found a method of geometrical, though not arithmetical, rectifica- 
tion, he managed to obtain publication — without much publicity — 
for a quarto pamphlet on A A^ew I\Ielhod of Reasoning in Geometry. 
Plato, Aristotle, Plotinus, and Proclus accompanied him as he 
delivered bank-bills ! Proclus especially was connected with a 
memorable association. Mary Woollstoncraft and Miss Blood re- 
sided with the Taylors for three months. The former listened to 
his commentaries on Plato and named his study the "Abode of 

Six years of drudgery at the bank was too much for our phi- 
losopher. After attempting a "perpetual lamp" — phosphorus 
immersed in oil and salt boiled — and exhibiting his invention at 
the Freemason's Tavern, (when the phosphorus fired and created 
prejudice,) he was influentially assisted to leave the bank and live 
on literary "toil." Flaxman, the sculptor, encouraged his devo- 
tion to Plato and introduced bira to eminent ones, among them 
the erratic Marquis de Valady. The Marquis was one of the re- 
markable characters in the French Revolution ; he acted with the 
Girondins and was condemned to death in 1794. 

After the Marquis left him, Taylor received a legacy of some 
six or seven hundred pounds. The student immediately spent the 
bulk in relieving his poor relations and betrayed no worldly wis- 
dom in disposing of the rest. Five or six years after he was as 
needy as ever, and, to keep the wolf from the door, made seven 
months miraculous with translations of Plato's Dialogues, illus- 
trated with notes and elaborate introductions. The copy was bar- 
gained away for the sum of fifty pounds ! Another labor was his 
translation of Pausanias — -ten months' devotion rewarded by sixty 
pounds ! Samuel Patterson observed to a bookseller that the task 
itself was "enough to break a man's heart." "Oh," said the 
bookseller, " nothing will break the heart of Mr. Taylor! " But 
the strain of this enterprise claimed a heavy price from the scholar. 
His frame was ravaged by extreme debility, and he lost the use of 
his forefinger. Yet the light of his soul burned, star-like, the 
brighter because of the blackness of night. In difficulty of hand 
and lassitude of body he completed Plato for English readers in 
two years, and further engaged in translating Aristotle's Nicho- 
machean Ethics as well as the Metaphysics. These were published 
at the expense of the Duke of Norfolk. Some sixty-seven volumes 
represent the monumental lifework of this single-hearted scholar, 
and only one was actually paid for by the booksellers or the pub- 
lic. The victim died at Walworth, November i, 1835, through 
disease of the bladder. A few days before his death be asked if a 
comet had appeared — answered "Yes, "he said: "Then I shall 
die; I was born with it, and shall die with it." Pure of heart 
even as a little child, single in purpose, impervious to menace, his 
enthusiasm for Greek thought, and his mighty achievements in 
interpreting neglected aspects of philosophy without hope of sor- 
did reward must surely arrest a tribute of admiration from all 
lovers of learning and literature. He had rectitude and splendid 
sincerity. He lacked balance — there was no lumber in his hold, to 

use a phrase of the sea. His only vices were generosity, applica- 
tion, and self-neglect. In the turmoil of London — in the nine- 
teenth century of Christ-worship — the Neo-Platonist courted pov- 
erty and risked imprisonment, sacrificed health and his very life 
at the shrine of ancient and almost derided tombs, and finally 
rests in an undiscoverable grave no pilgrim may consecrate with 
v/orthy wreath of remembrance. 

Three of Taylor's important translations have just been repub- 
lished.' Mr. Bertram Dobell is one of the fine spirits of cultured 
liberalism who redeems publishing from mere commerce, and 
cares for what is great and enduring in literature far above its 
price in the market. lamhlichus is an almost exact facsimile of the 
first edition of 1821, and is intended as the first of a revival series 
of the now scarce and costly originals. This book has no appeal 
to the Philistines of "progress." Only earnest students of ancient 
philosophy, who admit a deep spiritual debt to the profound specu- 
lations of the ages we have inherited, will worthily cherish this 
message from a vanished world. The message is saturated with 
the wisdom of the Chaldeans, the lore of Egyptian prophets, with 
Assyrian dogma and the doctrines of the Hermaic pillars. Taylor 
indeed highly appraises the work as "the most copious, clearest, 
and the most satisfactory defence extant of genuine ancient the- 
ology " — scientific as sublime. He holds that the operations of 
this theology had previously been surveyed only in the corrup- 
tions of barbarian nations, or during the decline and fall of the 
Roman Empire when overwhelmed with pollution. Epitomising 
his elsewhere more elaborate discussions, Taylor holds this theol- 
ogy to celebrate the immense principle of things as something su- 
perior to being itself — as exempt from the whole of things of which 
it is the ineffable source. This principle is the one and the good — 
the former indicating its transcendent simplicity, the latter its 
subsistence as the object of desire to all beings. "At the same 
time, however, it asserts that these appellations are in reality 
nothing more than the parturitions of the soul, which, standing as 
it were in the vestibules of the adytum of deity, announce nothing 
pertaining to the ineffable, but only indicate her spontaneous 
tendencies towards it, and belong rather to the immediate offspring 
of the first God than to the first itself " (p. 10). This dogma is 
based on scientific reasoning. The principle of all things is the 
one. This implies the necessity of continual progression of beings 
without intervening vacuum in corporeal or incorporeal natures — 
natural progression to proceed through similitude. Each produc- 
ing principle should generate a number of the same order with it- 
self — nature a natural number, soul a psychical number, and in- 
tellect an intellectual number. Since there is one unity the prin- 
ciple of the universe, this unity should produce from itself prior 
to everything else a " multitude of natures characterised by unity, 
and a number the most of all things allied to its cause ; and these 
natures are no other than the gods " (p. 12). 

Emerson speaking of this " terrific unity " proceeds on kin- 
dred lines : 

"The mind is urged to ask for one cause of many effects; 
" then for the cause of that ; and again the cause, diving still into 
"the profound ; self-assured that it shall arrive at an absolute 
" and sufficient one — a one that shall be all. ' In the midst of the 
"sun is the light, in the midst of the light is truth, and in the 
" midst of truth is the imperishable being' say the Vedas. All 
"philosophy, of East and West, has the same centripetence. 
" Urged by an apposite necessity, the mind returns from the one, 
"to that which is not one, but other or many; from cause to ef- 
" feet ; and affirms the necessary existence of variety, the self-ex- 

1 latnblichus on the Mysteries of the Egyptians, Chaldeans, and Assyrians, 
pages, x!ivi-365. 7s 6d. (The Mystical Hymns 0/ Orpheus, pages, vi-205, 5s 6d. 
has been published since this article was in type.) Bertram Dobell, 77 Char- 
ing Cross Road, London, The Republic of Plato, pages, 309. is 6d. Walter 
Scott, Paternoster Square. 



"istence of both, as each is involved in the other. These strictly- 
" blended elements it is the problem of thought to separate, and 
" to reconcile. Their existence is mutually contradictory and ex- 
' ' elusive ; and each so fast slides into the other, that we can never 
"say what is one, and what it is not. The Proteus is as nimble 
"in the highest as in the lowest grounds, when we contemplate 
' the one, the true, the good — as in the surfaces and extremities 
" of matter."' 

From these dazzling summits — returning to Taylor — "these 
ineffable blossoms, these divine propagations, being, life, intellect, 
soul, nature, and body depend ; monads suspended from unities, 
deified natures proceeding from deities" (p. 12). All the great 
monads are comprehended in the first one from which they and 
all their depending series are unfolded into light. With singular 
passion and ardent sincerity, Taylor pauses to declaim that igno- 
rance and impious fraud have conspired to defame the inestimable 
works of Proclus, Plotinus, Porphyry, lamblichus, Syrianus, Am- 
monius, Damascius, Olympioderus, and Simplicius, — denounces 
the " insane fury of ecclesiastical zeal" that heaps ridicule and 
contempt on the "grand dogmas" of the ancients. One is irre- 
sistibly reminded of some pathetic touches in Carlyle's immortal 
prose-picture of Coleridge in _/<'//« 6'/«//k^. "The practical in- 
tellects of the world did not heed him, or carelessly reckoned him 
a metaphysical dreamer." Even that gust of scholarly anger from 
Taylor's "Abode of Peace," suggests the image of Coleridge as 
eloquent to Carlyle of a life full of suffering, heavy-laden, "swim- 
ming painfully in seas of manifold physical and other bewilder- 
ment" — eyes as full of sorrow as of inspiration, with confused 
pain looking mildly from them as in mild astonishment that the 
world should blindly misunderstand a beloved thought. British 
Public Characters for 1798, which records Taylor's life prior to 
that date, embellishes the cautious narrative with a small profile 
portrait. Amiability and tenderness are there allied to the massive 
power of research, the noble gift of idealism, the abstract retreat 
far backward to the tombs of mighty thinkers, and the instinctive 
gaze futureward, when unborn generations should in the crisis of 
Christianity return in intellectual penitence to worship what was 
spurned in the delirious victory of Hebraism. In Walter Pater's 
lectures on Plato and Platonism,'^ we listen to the impressions of 
a reviewer who casually knew the personalities he discusses as 
though Platonism were, say, a singular kind of Oxford movement, 
with John Henry Newman replacing Plato as the protagonist of 
the group. The attitude of a lecturing reviewer is a far cry from 
the profound reverence and passionate belief that Taylor vitalised 
his achievements with, in his life of neglected but enduring la- 
bor. I have not the impertinence to linger longer over lajiibliclnis, 
remembering that Emerson said Taylor's translations were as fa- 
miliar in American as ignorantly ignored in English libraries. 
Never Christ or any other spoke truer words than "a prophet is 
without honor in his own country." America knows more of the 
homes and graves of Shakespeare, Byron, Burns, and Carlyle, 
than England — it has been said in bitter truth that any wealthy 
and cultured American would enthusiastically outbid the whole 
British Empire if these were on sale. Taylor is buried in Wal- 
worth churchyard — but like Moses no man can find his grave. 

Of the Politeia — the Commonwealth, more familiarly known as 
the Republic, of Plato, his intellectual crown, no word is needed 
save to mention the cheap and elegant reprint. All discussion 
varies with individual views of life, education, philosophy, and 
art — uniquely so in approach to that mighty work that was written 
when the " glory that was Greece" was vanishing in depravity. 
Yet it may be permitted to illustrate one moral from the Republic. 
The contemporary social disorder every patriot laments is poison- 
ous to art. In the soul of Plato the artist was strangled by the 

1 Representative Men : Plato, pp. 22-23. 
2Macmillan &Co. 1893. 

social regenerator. Luxurious ministrations to the sense of beauty 
were denounced by him as bitterly as in the mouthings of mod- 
ern socialists, Hellenic politics were as lamentably complicated 
and self-seeking as in America and England to-day. To Sparta 
and to Egypt Plato directed his observations, and his intellect re- 
turned with a burden of regulations for his ideal Stale. Sexual 
morality in Sparta was as compliant as the yearning soul of Mr, 
Grant Allen could wish — masculine jealousy was sternly repro- 
bated, and the husband was expected to encourage his wife to be 
communal in her favors. Wherefore, pronounces Plato, in the 
fifth book of the Republic, " these women must be common to all 
these men, and that no woman dwell with any man privately, and 
that their children likewise be common ; that neither the parent 
know his own children, nor the children their parent." 

So in this our day, socialists in revolt against the righteous 
individualism of liberty and property assail not only the worship 
of beauty in art, but also the sweetest sanctities of hearth and 
home. When the disorderly elements of democracy are fatally 
saturated with teachings that academic socialists borrow — without 
undue acknowledgment — from the more visionary ethics of Plato 
the result is obvious. Yet the philosophic dreamer hated de- 
mocracy as fiercely as he might have hated recent applications of 
his theory. His Cloudcuckootown was possibly a parable of re- 
deeming correction, scarcely an everlasting license for universal 
indulgence. Taylor earnestly argued that purity of conduct was 
the basis of the Pythagoric and Platonic philosophy. 

Philosophy — purity — two great words of different import— 
these are memorial and remembered echoes of Taylor's life-task. 
He loved philosophy and labored to consecrate it as the divinest, 
holiest, and most valiantly catholic and beautiful influence in the 
life of man, and his adoration was chastened by the pure and 
childlike heart for which the poet prayed. His exquisite interpre- 
tation of the marriage of Cupid and Psyche in " The Golden Ass 
of Apuleius" — the union of the soul with "pure desire" — is sin- 
cerely ingenious, and, in contrast with another interpretation, 
self-revealing of the union in that frail and afflicted frame of mar- 
vellous brain and moral excellence. 

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The Open Court. 



No. 455. (Vol. X.— 20.) 

CHICAGO, MAY 14. 1896. 

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Dr. Barrows, Professor of the University of Chi- 
cago, delivered yesterday evening in the auditorium 
of the Societes savatites a very important and highly 
significant lecture. The subject announced, "Reli- 
gion and Human Fraternity," was designed to bring 
before the public notice again the project of holding 
a Congress of Religions at Paris in 1900. It is well 
known that Professor Barrows was the organiser and 
President of the Parliament of Religions held in Chi- 
cago in 1893. It was this inducement which attracted 
to the hall in the Rue Serpente a large and select au- 
dience, all of whom were extremely interested in the 
liberal ideas involved in this singular movement for 
religious union and conciliation, of which the World's 
Congresses are the most striking manifestation. 

M. Leroy-Beaulieu presided over the meeting. On 
the platform with him were seated MM. le vicomte 
de Meaux, Fr^d^ric Passy, Bonet- Maury, Lavisse, 
I'abb^ Victor Charbonnel, Georges Picot, Theodore 
Reinach, Buisson, C. Wagner, and others. There 
were gathered around the lecturer thus a body of men 
of the most diverse beliefs and convictions, but all of 
whom had been drawn to the place by the same spirit 
of tolerance. Is not this grand example an augury of 
approaching religious peace and union, wherein all 
believers, and all philosophers who respect the holy 
workings of conscience, can be joined together by an 
understanding of good will, not involving fusion, and 
can proclaim this understanding in an immense con- 

M. Leroy-Beaulieu introduced the orator in a few 
simple words. He recalled his preponderant role in 
the last Parliament of Religions and remarked how he 
had aided the progress of mankind by this exhibition 
of generosity. The moral union of religions, the fra- 
ternal accord of men in the same religious aspirations 
— such is the new dream which is haunting the best 
souls of mankind, forgetful of the old and sterile quar- 
rels of dogmatism. Of this dream America is the 
noble inspiration and Dr. Barrows the most valiant 
and tenacious apostle. 

1 From U Eclair ol Paris. Communicated by the Abbe Charbonnel. 


The orator arose. A beautiful and prophetic head, 
a high, broad forehead, and large, blue eyes, lighted 
by amiability, marked his appearance. But this was 
a prophet of his own country. His attitude was firm 
and natural ; it bore testimony that the prophet when 
the time came could also be a man of deeds. 

In correct French and with only a slight but par- 
donable American accent, he said that the age of re- 
ligious divisions and disputes was ended, that hence- 
forward religion should be only a bond of fraternity 
between man and man, and the most powerful element 
of peace through love. The Congress of Religions at 
Chicago opened a new era of religious and intellectual 
pacification. A second Congress at Paris in 1900 will 
continue the progress there accomplished. 

And here the orator answered a weighty objection 
which has been raised in Europe. It has been as- 
serted that congresses of this sort admit the parity 
and proclaim the equal value of all religions. Yes, 
replied Dr. Barrows, they do involve parliamentary 
equality, but not doctrinal equality. When the Re- 
public of the United States invited the small Republics 
of South America to take part in the exposition at 
Chicago at the same time with the great nations of 
Europe, was its invitation equivalent to proclaiming 
the equality of all the countries of the world ? Each 
of these countries showed what it could show of its 
commercial greatness, and that was all. And so it is 
with religious congresses. Each is assured in its doc- 
trinal integrity without abdication or abjurement ; 
and all affirm in common the essential principle which 
serves as the foundation of each individual faith. But 
that is not tantamount to asserting their equal value. 
The audience did not fail to applaud this genuinely 
American explanation. The lecture in other points, 
too, was a great success. 


In the speech of Dr. Barrows, the sole topic had 
been that of the Congress of Religions. It appeared 
to us advisable, therefore, to ask Abb6 Charbonnel 
at the close of the lecture what were his impressions, 
and how faf- the cause had progressed of which he 
had continued an unconquerable champion. 



"You see," he said to us, "the matter is always 
"under discussion and is being vigorously pushed. I 
"am quite satisfied with the evening's exercises. The 
"organisers have made their preparations without 
"much noise, and are anxious not to give umbrage to 
"any one and not to arouse hushed quarrels; but to 
"be frank with you, their object has been to com- 
"mence a period of effective agitation for the Con- 
"gress of Universal Religions in 1900. 

"The statements of Dr. Barrows, which five hun- 
"dred persons have just frantically applauded, mark a 
"beginning of opinion, and they also give us an ink- 
"hng of the decisions of the powers that be. The 
"man who in the face of difficulties as grave as those 
"now felt in France, made a success of the Parlia- 
"ment of Religions in Chicago, will be able to do the 
"same for the Congress of Religions in Paris. The 
"idea will go its way, and nothing will stop it. Our 
"adversaries will count in vain on inertia and on the 
"conspiracy of silence to prevent a movement which 
"is growing irresistible; we shall carry our campaign 
"to the end, and that a successful one. Four years 
"more ! And during that time by defending the idea 
"and the principle of the Congress, we shall have 
"built it up in a manner, and by articles and lectures 
"will have disengaged a mass of opinion. We shall 
"have preached tolerance, liberty of conscience, the 
"equal dignity not of religion but of religious con- 
" sciences, the union of all hearts in the same glorious 
"sentiment, and finally the sublime religion of the 
"brotherhood of man in the fatherhood of God. And 
"all the world can and must recognise this religion as 
' ' a supreme blessing for our time of ' moral distress. ' " 

In fine, the Abb6 Charbonnel is more convinced 
than ever that the year 1900 will see a Congress of 
Religions at Paris. 



Antonio Rosmini-Serbati was born in 1797. At 
the age of twenty-four he had conceived the purpose 
of passing his life in placing Christian theology upon 
a sound and modern philosophic basis ; and with that 
lofty object entered the service of the Catholic Church 
in 1821. By 1848 he had become Minister of Educa- 
tion under Pio Nono. He was ever an advocate of 
speculative progress and practical reform, though de- 
voted alike to the Church at large and to the person 
of the Pope. It is even said that one of his works was 
placed upon the Index Expurgatorius. He died in 


Rosmini was a voluminous writer. He seems to 
have been first formally introduced to inquiring Eng- 
lish readers by Davidson's Rosmini' s Philosophical Sys- 
tem, published in 1882. 

In 1883 appeared a translation of what is deemed 
Rosmini's most important and characteristic work, by 
two members of the English branch of the "Society 
of the Brothers and Sisters of Charity," or Rosminians. 
This book is entitled New Treatise on the Origin of 
Ideas. The original, Nuoiw Saggio sull' origine delle 
idee, was published in 1830. The edition which the 
translators used was the fifth Italian one, revised by 
the author and produced in 1851. The whole work is 
said by the translators to have enjoyed the direct or 
indirect sanction of five Popes. We will now turn to 
the very interesting Preface which these scholars have 
written, and consider the account therein given of 
their great master in Catholic philosophy. In deal- 
ing, as they particularly profess to do, with the main 
objections against his speculative scheme, they pre- 
sent us clearly and concisely with their own concep- 
tion of the scheme, and of its author's philosophic 

Rosmini, it will surprise most rationalists to learn, 
"found an answer to all his inquiries in the Light of 
Reason." And one might imagine it to be a present- 
day Positive or Agnostic Monist, instead of a Catho- 
lic Dualist, of whom it is said : "He had to present 
the entire Scibile humanum, both natural and super- 
natural, as forming but one great and magnificent 

His unnamed translators assert that " Rosmini ex- 
hibited all the qualities which are usually taken to de- 
note the perfect philosopher. . . . With him education 
had been, and ever was, a true 'discipline in accuracy 
of mind.' " Again they say "it may well be claimed 
that a philosophical erudition as extensive, as deep, 
and as precise as is contained in his published works, 
would be sought for in vain in any other writer." 

In his Introduction to Philosophy, it seems, Rosmini 
has described his first ardor for metaphysical research; 
how enthusiastically he read ; and how resolutely he 
summed up the day's result at the day's end. Here 
too he has given us his own conception of what a 
philosopher's mental qualifications ought to be. It 
runs as follows: "In the first place he lays much 
stress on the absolute necessity of seeking truth and 
truth alone, firmly persuaded that, in itself and in its 
consequences, it must lead to good. Next he reminds 
us that whoever would devote his time to philosophy 
must cast aside every form of prejudice likely in the 
least to hinder him from discovering and possessing 
truth in all its fulness and distinctness. Thirdly, he 
dwells with special emphasis on what he terms the 
liberty of philosophising. " 

In confirmation of their rendering of Rosmini's 
views, the translators give us furthermore his very 
words. In answer to one who had inquired as to the 
best disposition and direction of the mind for the pur- 



suit of philosophic truth, Rosmini wrote : "To have 
received a beautifully moulded soul appears to me to 
be undoubtedly the best of all dispositions. Next to 
this is elevation of mind and an unswerving consis- 
tency of thought. . . . Then must be added perfect 
freedom from all those fetters by which the littleness 
of man impedes the flight of genius. The mind must 
be accustomed to gaze on the ideas themselves, 
stripped of all the trappings of words, schemata, and 
methods. It must be made to recognise truth under 
all forms and colors, to love it under all, to abhor 
every school or system that would impose limits to 
these forms of truth, and to study profoundly the mean- 
ings of words." 

All this is most admirable and might find fitting 
place in any treatise on the principles of naturalism. 
And when we come to particulars we are even more 
struck with the boldness and reasonableness of Ros- 
mini's scheme and method. He had studied the his- 
tory of the physical sciences and had been profoundly 
impressed by the advances made in modern times. 
These immense advances in result came, as he saw, 
from the advance in inethod. " Why, "demanded Ros- 
mini, we are actually told, "should not this method 
be applied to philosophy, to the internal and spiritual 
facts of the soul and of consciousness?" 

"Like Kant, he discovered that whatever is ma- 
terial in our knowledge of things is supplied by the 
senses and experience ; and that all in it which is 
"puteXy formal is furnished by the mind." But, unlike 
Kant, he "discovered" also that the forms of the 
mind are reducible to one which is not subjective, 
"but objective and presented to the spirit from with- 
out, by God himself." This were a discovery, indeed. 
Would that we could, in the face of facts, correctly 
call it one. However, it is interesting to hear the 
opinion of the very able and equitable translators of 
this remarkable book, " that it cut up by the roots the 
chief errors of agnosticism, positivism, materialism, 
and pantheism, in all the forms in which they can pre- 
sent themselves." 

Rosmini's philosophical objection to agnosticism 
is that "we cannot know phenomena without knowing 
something beyond them." The contrary opinion is, 
as he represents it, a conclusion drawn from the pre- 
mise that all our ideas "come through the senses." 
And this premise he conceives to be a baseless one. 

Now as against pure "sensism," we may admit 
Rosmini's point. There is no doubt that any agnos- 
ticism built upon unassisted sensationalism requires 
reconstruction. But neither is there any doubt that 
it can be reconstructed. We really owe an everlast- 
ing grudge to Condillac and his otherwise clearsighted 
followers for their unfortunate one-sidedness in pre- 
senting Locke to continental thought. How far-reach- 

ing this misrepresentation has been may be seen from 
Kant's curious confusions on the vexed question of 
experience. Again and again have modern natural- 
istic evolutionary thinkers to insist that, in their own 
positive opinion at any rate, the experience, through 
which alone, as they hold, valid ideas can come is not 
a matter of sensation merely; that Locke opined, and 
Herbert Spencer may be said to have proved, that ex- 
perience is the product not of sensation only, but of 
reflexion also. 

This being so the evolutionary philosophic natur- 
alists are free to claim consistently that they too have 
the light of truth to guide them ; and to assert that 
their reflexion is no less capable than is Rosmini's 
"Light of Reason " to lead towards a rightful render- 
ing of the world's great course of being, so far as it 
may be decipherable by man. Through this reflective 
power have many minds in recent days arrived at the 
really revolutionary view that we can know phenom- 
ena without knowing anything beyond them. That all 
we can reasonably do is to infer what lies beyond. 
That therefore " what lies beyond " is no true guide 
for the life either of conduct or of thought. But that 
the sometimes despised "phenomena" — including as 
they do the ph}'sical, mental, emotional, and moral 
natures of mankind — are, whether or not the only 
needed, most certainly the only actual informers of how 
we may more or less attain to the whole, the good, the 
beautiful, the true. 

The translators appeal to the "learned" to "take 
their flight to a world altogether metaphysical and 
eternal, " and so forth. And they insist "that there 
is a world which only the eye of the mind, illumined 
by the pure, spiritual light of reason, can look upon." 
Let them add the light of moral sense to the light of 
reason — as they would no doubt be willing to do — and 
we may all be with them. Nay, rather, if the trans- 
lators and their co-religionists were really true to these 
two lights would they not be with us ere long in their 
rejection of that supernatural creed which they so 
strangely, as it seems to us naturalists, deem congru- 
ous with the lofty philosophic principles they hold? 

Perhaps the most remarkable passage in this ex- 
tremely interesting Preface (beyond which we cannot 
now go) is that wherein its authors. Catholic thinkers 
though they are, assert the claims of reason over au- 
thority in the philosophic field. It must not be in- 
ferred, they say, "that Rosmini brings the principle 
of authority into philosophy. No one knew better 
than he that philosophy is the science of pure reason, 
that it is wholly built on reason, and that no author- 
ity, as such, can claim a place in it." 

Such an admission is certainly of profound impor- 
tance. And not less so is the concluding estimate of 
Rosmini's mind and character, which, upon this show- 



ing, must have been of a singularly elevated type. 
"For his fellowmen, or rather for God seen in his fel- 
lowmen," his interpreters declare, "he sacrificed ease, 
riches, worldly ambition. The true good, the real 
happiness of his neighbor was the aim of his every 
thought and action. When he elaborated what he be- 
lieved to be the system of truth, and labored to bring 
it to perfection, when he employed all the resources 
of a gigantic intellect, and a vast philosophical and 
theological erudition, it was simply because he was 
profoundly persuaded that the only way to make men 
better was through the truth. He held that truth un- 
derstood, loved, embraced, followed unswervingly, 
must lead to goodness of heart, to moral perfection, 
and through this to rest and happiness." 

A nobler view of speculative thought than this 
could no one hold. And it is to the fearless expres- 
sion of such views that we may most confidently look 
for the development of those existing forces within 
the Church which are already disintegrating, and must 
eventually destroy the sectaiianism of all the Churches. 



Everywhere in the world the rushing course of 
human thought has worn for itself similar channels 
through the diversified strata of the natural formations 
of brain. 

As in the crust of this earth we inhabit there is a 
great underlying primary formation, call it what you 
please — igneous, plutonic, or primary, in one case a 
priori, of principle ; of God on the other, the two re- 
main parallel and analogous to the student of man- 
kind — its origin and its destiny. 

Into the depths of this region, the foundation-rock 
of all thought, all science, all reasoning, it is not the 
province or purpose of this paper to seek to penetrate. 
We begin our investigations where practical geology 
begins — with the early accretions, out of which, par- 
ticle by particle, age after age, were built up succes- 
sively the various periods. 

The seeming duality of our simile, whereby the 
solid strata are apparently separated, and thought 
compared to a river, while character is likened to the 
rocks of the canyon, disappears upon close and accu- 
rate investigations. 

The same power gave origin to both, for the very 
rocks themselves were born of water and that spirit, 
constant and continuous in its operations, which though 
intermittent as old orders changed, has never ceased 
its manifestation while the flux of forces moved on 
irresistibly forward forever. 

The solid rocks, strata piled upon strata, whirled 
and distorted, worn and wasted, disintegrated and 
crumbled into mould, and the living things that — 

like afreets released from the seal of Solomon — -have 
bloomed because of the soil and the rain, both can 
trace back their ancient genealogy to one common 
father, to that perfect and perpetual power of the sun- 
beam that came down from heaven to raise and sup- 
port the low and to illumine the darkness. 

Life is the child of the sun. The sunbeam is both 
author and finisher of all our vitalities. The primal 
cell, the herb-bearing seed, the animal, each after his 
kind, to mankind, the crowning slope of nature's su- 
premest effort, all are one in their origin, and links in 
the eternal chain of causation. 

Light, heat, actinity, electricity; these and all 
other potencies, coequal and coeval with gravitation, 
are but phases of that power which is, in one word, 

And it is this power, this influence, manifested in 
the material universe, which, in the lens and prism of 
the human organism, is transmuted into that godlike 
attribute, which, whether called spirit or mind or soul 
or consciousness, has made man in the image of God. 

The radical fault of man in attempting to solve 
those problems commonly called of religion, has been 
and still is that he has always been that which he now 
stigmatises as "infidel" — an agnostic. 

He has found himself alive in a world demanding 
thought as a condition of survival, and yet he has de- 
liberately declined thought concerning that life which 
is, of all kinds of life, the most important for him to 
know about. 

He has found that experience and experiment are 
the ultimate atoms out of which the reality of reason 
is made, and yet in the domain of religion has dis- 
carded both experience and experiment. 

In lower truths, of daily action, of practical affairs, 
of arts and sciences, he demonstrates fully his faith in 
results, his confidence in method, and finally his im- 
plicit belief in the principles of all his dealings, but in 
religion, necessarily and naturally the highest of all 
truth, he puts aside all effort, gives up all method, 
and deliberately devotes himself to intellectual de- 

I once listened to a series of sermons by an emi- 
nent divine on the subject of how to serve God : how 
to serve Him with the hands, the feet, the lips, all the 
physical organs of the body, but he never discoursed 
upon that vastly more important matter. How to serve 
God with the reason. 

Child as I was, when I heard those sermons I re- 
member thinking that the good dominie had made a 
serious mistake in that matter. 

I understand now that he made no mistake. He 
was like the tethered bullock, and could not graze be- 
yond the narrow circle within whose limits he was 
bound. And yet he was minister in the church founded 



by Him, the chiefest of whose tenets was that his word 
was not bound. 

I am not the only one to recognise this remarkable 
discrepancy, and I am very far from the first who has 
endeavored to reconcile the conflicting and as yet 
seemingly irreconcilable "views" of the divine mis- 
sion and of divine truth. Indeed it seems as if this 
modern era, these last years of the nineteenth cen- 
tury, are pre-eminently the age of inquiry, the epoch 
of doubt and uncertainty, the time of the agnostic. 

To "reconcile" religion and science seems to be 
the aim of countless militant minds. Word has come, 
blown on the winds, that across the multitudinous 
seas of doubt lies a new world, fairer than day, rich 
with the spoils of time, and now countless adventurers 
are embarking thither. 

Colons and Cabots of thought have gone forth in 
quest of this holy grail, and, returning, have given 
fanciful accounts of their wanderings, and displayed 
cargoes of what they claimed to be gold ore from the 
mines of that immaculate country, whose name is 

Alas! how delusive all such hopes have been, how 
futile the quest ; the glittering spangles have proved 
nothing but pyrites, — nothing but "fool's gold." 

From the earliest of the historic periods until now 
opinion in some of its versatile and variegated shapes 
has dominated mankind. In every age and in all 
quarters of the globe, quite naturally and by a process 
entirely parallel to physical selection, men have co- 
alesced into three great classes of religionists : those 
who accept, those who speculate, and those who deny. 
Acceptance is the mother of credulity; speculation of 
mysticism, and denial of despair. 

These classifications are broad and general. Credu- 
lity may be abject fetishism or it may be a pure and 
perfect faith ; mysticism may be and often is credu- 
lous, or it may by force of a sedulous training rise to 
pinnacles of philosophic heights not to be attained by 
either lethargic or combative intellects, while denial 
may and does take protean forms, some of whose con- 
clusions lift the doubting infidel into a region where 
the thinker having ceased to hope for an answer to the 
eternal why ? despair is cancelled from the equation 
of thoughts. 

Epicurian, Stoic, and Cynic amid the groves of 
Greece ; Confucianism, Taoism, and Buddhism in 
Asia, and in our own time and in all those countries 
of the West which we call and consider civilised, or- 
thodoxy, mysticism, and infidelity have divided and 
subdivided the imagination. 

The rainbow is the best physical analogy of this 
mental division ; there the three primal colors, while 
distinct in themselves, and inviolate of themselves, 
blend and merge insensibly one into another. 

As in the hues of the spectrum there are three re- 
gions and no defined frontier, so in religious or irreli- 
gious thought colors of character may meet and mingle 
and merge and overlay while yet all the while the es- 
sential elements remain fixed and fast and definite. 

It is not with the history of religions this paper 
proposes to attempt dealing ; this subject has been 
entered upon otherwhere, better and more fully than 
I could expect to do. It will, I think, be well to con- 
fine consideration to those theologies with whose gen- 
eral scope and purpose all are presumably familiar. 

The triad of mind relations as we know them may 
be somewhat crudely classed (as previously) into or- 
thodoxy, mysticism, and infidelity. 

Disregarding all refinements and dispensing with 
verniers and micrometers of dogma, doctrine, and ar- 
ticles, orthodoxy means that kind of creed which be- 
lieves, or claims to believe, in a personal God, a lost 
individual, a distinct personal individuality after death, 
a system of rewards and punishments, and a plan of 

Broadly this will, I feel sure, pass as a sufficient 
definition of the system which we know as Christianity. 

But where and how shall we locate our devotees 
of mysticism ? A correct catalogue of all the fantastic 
fads and fancies of speculation would be as long as 
Groombridge's of the fixed stars, with the disadvan- 
tage that as yet right ascension and declination have 
no meaning as applied to the creations of the religious 
juggler. Spiritisms, so called. Christian sciences, 
faith cures, theosophies ; these and countless others 
akin to them incubate almost daily, and their disci- 
ples increase and multiply for a while till a voracious 
ism — better able and fitter to survive — comes along to 
swallow the brood. 

Of infidelity also there are countless varieties : 
agnosticisms, deisms, theisms, isms numberless; be- 
lievers in all sorts and conditions of unbelief; men 
who are faithful to unfaith and those who are unfaith- 
ful to all faith. 

When the colors of the mental spectrum are well 
defined in any single personality, belief, however pe- 
culiar, has at least the merit of being consistent, and, 
in a way, logical. 

But how grotesque and ludicrous are those illogi- 
cal minds in whom are blended confusedly all the col- 
ors of the prism, who, chameleon-like, scintillate with 
the hues of such phases of fancy as they chance to 
clamber on. 

From those who have broken loose from the shackles 
of creed and church, and from those who yet remain 
ostensibly identified with some ecclesiastical organi- 
sation come the same iridescent shimmers of opinion. 

From orthodoxy of the Hebrew type, in which the 
plan of salvation is Mosaic, has come a horde of re- 



formers, some of whom, continuing to hold practically 
the ancient creed are devoted chiefly to effecting 
changes in ritual, while others are, or seek to be ra- 
tionalists. Of these latter by far the most extreme 
school of thought is that of "Ethical Culture." 

Felix Adler and his coadjutors are doing a grand 
work, one of the grandest, best conceived, most sensi- 
ble works ever originated in America. But the work 
is purely ethical and humanitarian. Its best endeavor 
seems to be to make admirable machines of human- 
ity, but to dispense with the mechanic. Religiously 
it is distinctly non-atheistic, it does not positively 
deny a God, but practically ignores him. 

Ethics is the art of the artizan ; religion the art of 
the artist. It has to do, not with the preparation of 
pigments, but with color, form, and perspective. 

For several years the councils of the Christian 
Church have been more or less distracted by that 
phase of "views" to be generally classed as "higher 
criticism." This cult originated, or acquired its pres- 
ent serious impetus from the editorial labors of the re- 
visers of the Bible. 

It has developed along a multiplicity of lines ; has 
solidified some churches, proved reactionary in at least 
one, — the Protestant Episcopal, — even found a lever 
in the Roman Catholic, and certainly bids fair to rend 
apart, if not disintegrate, the Calvinistic communion. 

The attitude of Heber Newton in the Episcopal 
Church is perhaps the most remarkable as illustrative 
of that broadness which has become the Church's 
boast. This eminent theologian has so adroitly held 
his lax theology as to be able to remain a frocked 
priest while distinctly, positively, and perpetually be- 
fouling his own nest with the odium of heterodoxy. 
For a Christian minister to write and print the state- 
ment that the Jesus Christ and the Buddha Christ 
were on a plane of equality may have been true, but 
it certainly was not orthodox. 

Dr. Briggs's position is, of course, different, but it 
is, after all, an "infidel" position; it antagonises or- 
thodoxy at the very point always claimed to be least 
liable to successful antagonism. 

To make reason co-ordinate with the Church and 
the Book is clearly no less infidel than to find a parity 
between Jesus and Siddartha. 

The very substance of orthodox theology is com- 
prised in three dicta : I. The certainty of a divine 
revelation; II. The infallibility of the means; III. 
The entire fallibility of reason. 

In the Catholic Church the infallible means are 
found in an infallible church as interpreter of an in- 
fallible book ; but Protestantism, having awakened a 
slumbering power, finds in liberty of conscience con- 
cerning the Book a swiftly growing monstrous Fran- 
kenstein, to destroy its infallibility. 

When the tool begins to think, the hand trembles; 
when her ministers invoke Reason, it is only a ques- 
tion of time before the Church will become reason- 

If man is nothing but a masterly mechanism, the 
former things — in large part still the present things — 
will never pass away; but if, as we are all inclined to 
believe, he is free, and has within him a capacity for 
conscious choice, they will inevitably pass away, and 
the present order change. 

The first steps have been taken. Dr. Briggs and 
men like minded, while yet clinging tenaciously to 
some of the older hallowed associations of thought, 
have set the door of rationalism ajar, and most as- 
suredly it will not be long before mankind will arrange 
itself both within and without the portal. Inside, the 
timid ; outside, the bold. In the Church the conser- 
vative ; in the larger Church the radical. Devoted to 
an ecclesiastical system, the idealists ; to a cosmic 
system, the practical. Sooner or later the line will be 
sharply drawn between those who seek satisfaction in 
lethargy and those who seek it by action ; between 
those who supinely want and those who grandly will ; 
between blind faith in some things and clear-sighted 
faith in all things ; between dogma and demonstration ; 
between superstition and science. 

The logic of the proposition is unanswerable, that 
if reason may be used at all in matters of religion, it 
may be used wholly. If minds may explore this re- 
gion, the more alert, active, and indefatigable the ex- 
plorer, the more certain the results of his exploration. 

Numerous efforts, all more or less fallacious, and 
all entirely futile, have been made to "reconcile" re- 
ligion and science. As men now regard religion, it is 
a matter whose province is altogether apart from sci- 
ence. It has been written : "If God himself has not 
revealed the truth to men, they are absolutely and 
hopelessly in the dark regarding it. They cannot con- 
struct any reasonable theory of it. One man's opin- 
ion is as good as another's, for nobody's is worth any- 
thing. Dogmas of the Church, based on the author- 
ity of Scripture, must be announced as something to 
be believed, not argued about." 

So long as religions continue to be regarded as a 
matter of opinion, this must continue to be, as it is, 
unqualifiedly true. 

Scientific truth has never come except in one way: 
experience and experiment have furnished data of 
facts, and by thoughtful consideration of these facts 
and their reactions and relations principles have been 
discovered, and, having been tested and found trust- 
worthy, accepted as true by the common consent of 

Inductive or deductive alike, all reasoning must 
necessarily be founded upon a rock of knowledge, and 



knowledge is nothing more than an accurate relation 
between what is commonly called subjective and ob- 
jective, — between the knower and the known. 

But practically there is a wide difference between 
the inductive and deductive methods of learning. In 
chemistry, for instance, how futile a process of de- 
duction would be. In that science the axioms, or 
"common notions,"or "self-evident truths," are iden- 
tical with the facts themselves, are innumerable, and 
the principles have only been established by ages of 
research, tests, and trials, and continual reconstruc- 
tion of hypotheses. 

There is one science all of whose operations are 
conditioned upon the reverse of this. In mathematics 
we have a confidence, a faith, if you choose, in prin- 
ciples, so profound, so sure, so safe, so easy, so quickly 
elucidated, that, like the motions of thought or light, 
it seems to come instantly, spontaneously, intuitively. 

Chemistry shows us a river of truth, large and 
grand, rolling steadily towards the sea ; but we realise 
that this broad water has come from countless afflu- 
ents, and these from branches, creeks, and rivulets, 
and all the mighty current, far up among the distant 
hills, has trickled out of mossy beds from among the 
roots of the mountains. 

Mathematics takes us directly to the source itself, 
to the geyser rising out of the heart of the intellect, 
and in its contemplation we are forced to ignore the 
unseen effort, which through long centuries drew up 
the waters from the glassy lakes and the ocean spray. 

In one case faith is founded upon the toil and ex- 
periment of others ; in the other case, it may be 
founded upon our own knowledge. 

So mathematics is essentially a science of deduc- 
tion ; chemistry of induction. 

We have ceased to have opinions concerning prin- 
ciples in chemistry ; we never had opinions concern- 
ing them in mathematics. In both cases we have 
"faith"; but in one faith has been acquired ; in the 
other it appears to be "given." 

Which sort of faith does theology demand? Evi- 
dently that of the chemical order. In effect the con- 
tention of ecclesiasticism is that to the Church has 
been confided by supernatural power the sort typified 
by mathematics ; that out of the mouth of apostles, 
prophets, and priests proceed lessons of wisdom which 
the multitude are to contemplate and believe, not, as 
they, at the source, but at a distance, devoutly faith- 
ful, faithfully credulous. 

Curiously enough, however, the results in the river 
of truth which the religious are supposed to contem- 
plate are distinctly ethical, while the faith that is de- 
manded of them is purely historical. 

Priests of orthodoxy inculcate rules of conduct 
common to all, but insist upon submission to observ- 

ances and acquiescence in doctrines exceedingly vari- 
ant in degree and often in kind. 

There is an undoubted science of evolutionary 
ethics yet somewhat inchoate in the same way that 
there is a chemical science ; but what hope is there 
now, or likely to germinate in the future, of a true 
science of religion ? 

Count Goblet D'Alviella says that "every serious 
religion consists of belief, worship, and rules of con- 
duct." What hope does there seem to be for any 
"reconciliation"? Does it seem possible that science 
will ever be able to give affirmative answers to the 
queries of theology that " a personal God," a lost in- 
dividual, a distinct, personal individuality after death, 
a system of rewards and punishments and a plan of 
salvation" will ever be "believed in " as chemistry is 
believed in or mathematics? 

This expectation seems nothing but an infatuation ; 
the gulf seems utterly impossible between religion and 
science, between faith and fact. 

And yet, looking backward across the flood of 
years, how brief the time appears when all the sci- 
ences were in precisely the condition in which we now 
find religion. Fifty years ago there was no science of 
electricity; a hundred, none of geology ; two hundred 
no chemistry, and we need only go far enough back- 
ward into the past to note the crude dawn of the earlier 
sciences of navigation and astronomy among the Phoe- 
nicians and Chaldeans. 

But the facts were in the world all the time un- 
formulated, waiting the touch of the wand of the ma- 
gician to give them life. Euclid came and geometry 
was "revealed." Newton was "inspired," and in like 
manner, — "each in his own order," — Volta, Priestly, 
Davy, Humboldt, Franklin, Edison, Tesla, one by one 
took their places in that great Walhalla of priests of 
science, whose foundation and walls and dome are 
built of eternal truth. 

The world does not require that we should abolish 
the historical religions ; but the spirit of progress 
stands beckoning and bids us, as Jesus did his disci- 
ples, " Come and see ! " 

The science of religion must interpret nature ; it 
must explain the personality of man, the being of God, 
the true character of life, and death and immortality. 
It must convert into terms of cause and effect the ideas 
of reward and punishment, translate plan and sal- 
vation and atonement, glibly used in the glossary of 
priestcraft, by the lexicon of truth. 

The science of religion must be an exact science, 
not founded upon the unknown, still less upon the un- 
knowable. It must assume nothing, condone nothing, 
conceal nothing. It must account for the cancer as 
well as the rose, for the earthquake and pestilence as 
well as the seed-time and harvest, for the simple 



as well as the sage, and for all be so plain that even 
the wayfaring man, though a fool, cannot err therein. 

The world is panting and athirst for truth. We 
are surfeited with superstition. We are tired of doubt. 
We want no longer the amorphous flocculence of 
creeds, but demand that from the solution of thought 
now saturated shall be precipitated a clear and per- 
fect crystal. 

The world awaits its revealer. And he shall surely 
come. Fear not lest we mistake his voice. There is 
a thrill to truth and we shall know him as on the 
Western plains some outpost beleagured by savage 
foes, hears upon the still air far away like a horn of 
elfland, the faint blast of the notes of a copper clarion 
and the throb of rescuing hoof-beats. 



'Tis not the softest couches 

That give the sweetest rest, 
'Tis not the richest viands 

That always taste the best, 
For beds of down may oft be filled 

With thorns that pierce the heart, 
And dainty food the sweetness lacks 

That hunger can impart. 

'Tis not the fairest faces 

The fairest names can boast, 
'Tis not the whitest fingers 

That help the needy most. 
Though jewels flash upon the breast. 

Think not it is a sign 
That other jewels, richer far. 

Within it meekly shine. 

'Tis not the brightest glitter 

Comes from the purest gold, 
'Tis not the gayest flowers 

The sweetest fragrance hold, 
A noble, loving heart may beat 

Beneath a ragged coat ; 
The homliest bird is often found 

To sing the sweetest note. 

'Tis not the deepest coffers 

The greatest wealth contain, 
'Tis not the first upon the earth 

The first in heaven remain. 
The rich man's far-famed charity 

May dwindle from the sight. 
While angels with their golden harps 

Sing of the widow's mite. 

perficially known. A banquet was given in honor of Dr. Barrows 
and the toasts given on that occasion were aglow with the spirit 
that animated the Parliament of Religions at Chicago. 

Important Biological Works. 


We are indebted to Abbe V. Charbonnel for the leading ar- 
ticle of the present number which appeared in Number 2708 of 
V Eclair, of Paris. The Abbe writes that the people of Europe 
become more and more interested in the idea of a Religious Par- 
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TELL 4912 

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'Tis Not. Mattie McCaslin 4918 

NOTES 4918 


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We have reviewed in the preceding article' the 
steps by which the deified forces of nature were trans- 
muted into immortal masters, and protectors of the 
different conditions and interests of human life. The 
process is readily comprehended. The lively feeling 
of owing everything good to the powers of nature, in 
itself no mean advance upon the earlier crude concep- 
tions, unavoidably dulls with time. The growing co- 
hesion and order of society, the more extensive char- 
acter of all the enterprises of peace and war at this 
stage, allows new trains of ideas to press to the front. 
The power of the king and war-hero now forces itself 
upon the attention as decisive of destiny ; and accord- 
ingly in those divinities who personified nature in the 
forms of preternatural men, the element of nature re- 
cedes more and more before the element derived from 
man. The suggestion of the morning star, or of the 
moon, pales before the stronger consciousness of being 
under the merciful protection or the corrective power 
of heroic and royal divine masters. 

These divine lords, as they are pictured in the 
Veda, all possess strong family resemblances. They 
are all very powerful, very glorious, very wise, very 
ready in aid. They all stand out in uniformly Ti- 
tanic stature, each one like his fellows, but poor in the 
possession of that matchless beauty in which the Greek 
saw his gods standing glorious before him. Zeus knits 
his dark brows, his ambrosial locks tumble forwards, 
and the Olympic heights tremble ; the barbaric god of 
the Veda " whets his horns and shakes them power- 
fully like a bull," the same sort of expression as that 
with which an early Chaldaic hymn, standing at about 
the same point of evolution, says of its god, "that he 
lifts his horns like a wild bull. " As yet, religious thought 
and feeling have not advanced the idea of divinity 
from the point of grandeur to that of infinity, from 
power to omnipotency, and have not in particular 
taken the step from multiplicity to unity. 

A single God is created by a history like that of the 
Old Testament, which, in the stress of great national 
experiences, in triumph and in defeat, so intimately 

1 Authorised translation from the Deutsche Rundschau by O. W. Weyer. 
!No. 453 of The Open Court. 

binds a people with the divinity that controls its des- 
tiny, that beside it all other gods disappear. Or, a 
sing/e God may be created by reflexion seeking over 
and beyond the heights and depths of existence the 
one loftiest height or the one inmost germ of all things. 
The former is the god of heroes and patriots ; the 
latter the still, calm divinity of the solitary speculator. 
But the bards of the Veda were neither patriots nor 
philosophers. The peace and comfortable existence 
of ancient India, the dispassionate character of the 
popular soul, to which, a deep and intense attachment 
to its own national existence remained unknown, were 
but rarely disturbed by national misfortunes or pas- 
sions such as those with which the history of Israel is 
filled. 1 And that impulse of philosophical reflexion 
toward unity in the confusion of phenomena is as j'et 
foreign to the age whose religious beliefs we are here 
describing. Such an impulse does not begin to show 
itself until the time of some of the latest poems of the 
Rig-veda, then, however, growing in the succeeding 
era to irresistible strength. 

The same multiplicity of gods, therefore, prevails 
in the Veda as of old — not the clean-cut result of a 

ITo appreciate thoroughly the difference in the whole tone of historical 
and religious sentiment in tiie Veda and in the Old Testament, compare two 
songs which in a measure occupy corresponding positions in the two litera- 
tures—the Song of the Victory of King Suda (Rig-veda, ■/. 18) and the Triumphal 
Song of Deborah (Judges, v). Both belong to the earliest poetical monuments 
—are possibly the oldest— of the nation from which they emanate. Both 
glorify hardly-won victories ; the details of the two battles bear great resem- 
blance to each other, so far as may be judged from the vacillating floods of 
the two hymns of victory. In each a swollen stream brought destruction to 
the foe. 

But how differently does the song of the heroic-sonled Jewish patriotess 
resound from that of the Brahmanic court-priest and poet. In the former, 
every word glows with passion, with a drunken joy of victory. Every whit of 
its energy is strained for the fight, the people staked its very soul upon the 
issue. Jehovah marched forth and all nature joined in the combat; the 
clouds deluged the earth with waters ; the stars in their courses contended 
against Sisera. We see the hostile leader collapse before the shepherd wo- 
man, who gave him milk when he asked for water, and struck him down with 
her hammer We see his mother gazing after him and moaning at the window 
lattice, " Why tarry the wheels of his chariots ? ' ' 

How different is the atmosphere of the Indian poem ! In the foreground 
stands the priest, busily and successfully performing his office, 

" As in pasture rich and fat the cow 
Drips milk, so Vashtha's song dripped over thee, 
O Indra I Master of the herds art thou, 
All say. Incline, accept our noblest offering." 

The foe fled like cattle from the pasture when they have lost their herder. 
Indra struck them down the moment the votive offering was cast upon his 
altar ; all the offered sweets he gave to Sudas to enjoy. What glimpse do we 
catch here of anxiety and of the outburst of prodigious passion on the part of 
a people battling tor its existence 1 



methodical partition, so to speak, of the administra- 
tive ofifices of the world's affairs among divine officials, 
but the complex product of manifold historical pro- 
cesses, of a kind of "struggle for existence" between 
ideas, on the one hand, whose value for the religious 
consciousness has dwindled away but which often 
maintain themselves more or less by a sheer faculty of 
pertinacity and those ideas which press into promi- 
nence through being favored by the advance of intel- 
lectual and material life. 

A final very marked characteristic of these divini- 
ties is that the phantasy of their adorers by no means 
raised them to the highest level of moral majesty, as 
they did to positions of the greatest power and highest 
glory. This step of incomparable importance in the 
evolution of religion — the association of the ideas of 
God and good — as yet can be descried in but a few 
faint signs, and this state most surel}' marks the reli- 
gion as still a barbaric one. At this stage, the thing 
most essential to the needs of the devout is that the 
God be a strong and kindly ruler, and of an easily in- 
fluenced disposition. But how was it possible that 
the mighty thunderer of preVedic times, or the mighty 
warrior and bestower of blessings of the Vedic reli- 
gion, Indra, should be formed of other ethical stuff 
than they, whose image he was, the terrestrial grands 
seigneurs'? The savage battles which fill his existence 
alternate with savage adventures of love and drink. 
Very little does he inquire into the sinfulness or recti- 
tude of mankind ; but all the more is he desirous of 
knowing who has slaughtered oxen on his altar and 
brought as an offering his favorite drink, the intoxi- 
cating som:\, whose streams "pour into him as rivers 
into the ocean," and "fill his belly, head, and arms." 
And it occasionally happens that he is not over par- 
ticular about remembering the wishes which his wor- 
shippers have preferred in their prayers, as when re- 
turning in the best of humor to his dwelling from a 
sacrifice in his honor, he says : "This is what I will 
do, — no, that : I'll give him a cow ! — or shall it be a 
horse ? I wonder if I have really had soma from him 
to drink? " 

Still, if one were to contemplate the picture of the 
Vedic divinities from this position only, he would be 
apt to falsely appreciate the manifold complexity of 
the intermingling currents. Distinct, it may be they 
were, originally, from the conceptions formed of the 
gods, yet the ideas of right and wrong, the sympathy 
naturally felt with the candid and fair man, the repu- 
diation of tortuous treachery, dread of the chains im- 
posed by guilt whether deliberate or unintentional, all 
this, of course, is well known to the Vedic world, and 
is expressed with sufficient vivacity in the Vedic poetry. 
And why, indeed, should not this domain of human 
interests and laws also find its rulerg and representa- 

tives among the heavenly beings as well as war, or 
man's daily occupation, or his domestic life? 

Although, therefore, the Vedic divinities as such 
and taken as a whole manifest no special character of 
holiness or rectitude, properly speaking, there is among 
them one particular divinity, Varuna, — originally a lu- 
nar divinity, as already said, — who assumes, as pecu- 
liarly his own, the office of caring for the mundane 
moral order — assisted by a circle of less prominent 
companions, who were originally, it is possible, the 
sun and the planets. This moral order is looked upon 
as having been originally established by Varuna, and 
by Varuna's strong arm and sorcery it is preserved. 
Varuna detects even the most secret transgression ; 
his snares are set for the treacherous ; he sends forth 
his avenging spirits ; he threatens the guilty with mis- 
fortune, illness, death. He suffers his forgiveness and 
pardon to shield the penitent, who make effort to ap- 
pease him. 

In a song of the Rig-veda, a guilt-laden one, pur- 
sued by disaster, cries: "I commune thus with my- 
self : When may I again approach Varuna ? What 
offering will he deign to accept, without showing an- 
ger? When shall I, my soul reviving, behold again 
his favor? Humbly, as a servant, will I make repara- 
tion to him, merciful that he is, that I may be once 
more blameless. To them that are thoughtless, the 
god of the Aryans has given prudence ; wiser than the 
knowing man, he advances them to riches." 

Varuna is here called the Aryan god. The his- 
torian, however, can hardly approve the bard's claim, 
for I believe we can discover in the apparently Ar- 
yan form of this god the signs of an un-Aryan deriva- 
tion. This much at all events is certain : that faith 
in their chief protector of the right extends backward 
into the epoch when the ancestors of the Indians 
still formed one people with the ancestors of the 
Iranians, as they hesitated on the threshold of the 
Indian peninsula. This god appears among the Indo- 
Iranians as Varuna, among the Iranians (in the re- 
ligion of Zoroaster) as the chief ruler of all that is 
good, Ahura Mazda, or Ormuzd. We cannot trace 
Varuna beyond the age of the Indo- Iranians into the 
prior time of the Indo-Europeans. Among the related 
peoples, like the Greeks or Teutons, we find no signs 
of him. Much, on the contrary, seems to me to agree 
in favor of the view that the Indo- Iranians had re- 
ceived this god from without, from the regions sub- 
ject to Babylonian civilisation. If I am right in this 
conjecture, is it to be looked upon as merely fortu- 
itous that right at the time when the remotest Semitic 
and pre-Semitic civilisation had fructified the religion 
of the Aryans, the point lies where the figure of the 
sin-avenging and sin-forgiving Varuna begins to sepa- 
rate frpm the primeval coarseness of such bruiser and 



tippler divinities as Indra, and to be distinguished by 
the sublime traits of sanctity and divine mercy ? 

It has been remarked that the cult devoted to di- 
vinities, at the point of the evolution of the Veda, 
chiefly assumes the form of the sacrifice. The gods 
have so far grown beyond human dimensions that the 
magic spells which could compel them at the will of 
man, no longer appear as the proper agency with 
which to influence them. And on the other hand, 
they are as yet too far removed from pure spirituality 
for a purely spiritual form of adoration. The wor- 
shipper may and must make himself acceptable to 
them by the simplest measures, industriously, loudly, 
even obtrusively. Resembling man as they do, they 
eat and drink like men. Accordingly offerings of 
food and intoxicating drink were needful, in order 
to fortify them and to stir them to mighty actions. 
They had to be flattered ; they were to be addressed 
in the most artfully agreeable style, and in the most 
superlative expressions possible as to their grandeur 
and their splendor. Thereupon is the proper moment 
for the worshippers, who sit around the sacrificial cere- 
mony "like flies about honey," to lay their desires 
before the gods: desires which— corresponding to the 
spirit of the age — are ever directed to the palpable 
goods of earthly existence, — a long life, posterity, the 
acquisition of property in horses and cattle, favorable 
weather, triumph over all enemies. The art of prop- 
erly performing these sacrifices and prayers is the 
main theme about which the whole spiritual life of 
the poets of the Rig veda revolves. To them the sac- 
rifice is the embodiment of all mysteries, the symbol 
of all the most important and profound of the phe- 
nomena of life. "By means of sacrifices, the gods 
offered sacrifices, — those were the first of all laws," 
says the Rig- Veda. 

The external marks of the Vedic sacrifice are so 
far simple, that as yet all the elements are wanting to 
it, which follow in the train of urban life and espe- 
cially of the development of the fine arts. There are 
no temples, no images of the divinities. The cult of 
shepherd tribes, whose migratory manner of life has 
not yet entirely become a fixed one, is as yet satisfied 
with a very simple altar, — established with the same 
facility everywhere, — the level, cleared greensward, 
over which soft grass is strewn, about the holy fires, 
as a resting-place for the invisible gods, who quickly 
collect from the atmospheric regions around. 

But there is no lack of artful embellishment of an- 
other kind in the Vedic sacrifice, — or even of an over- 
embellishment, according to Oriental custom. The 
song of praise and prayer, delivered at the sacrifice, 
is fashioned after the rules of an elaborate art, grow- 
ing ever more intricate. It is overladen with obscure 
allusions, in which theological mysticism parades its 

acquaintance with the hidden depths and crannies of 
things divine. To utter such a prayer and to offer up 
such a sacrifice not every one is called or fitted whom 
the inner impulse moves, but only the trained priest, 
one belonging to certain families who have formed an 
exclusive spiritual caste from time immemorial, — the 
priest who alone is accounted equal to the perilous, 
sacred duty of eating of the sacrificial feast, and to 
drink of the soma, the intoxicating drink of the gods. 
At sacrificial ceremonies of greater importance priests 
of this kind appear in throngs, singing, reciting, and 
performing the immense number of prescribed acts 
with that painful, purely external nicety which is pe- 
culiar to every cult standing at this point of historical 
development, and the displacement of which by the 
inner soul-life is everywhere the product of protracted 
later evolution. 

Religious ceremony of this sort is, indeed, far from 
having attained to the "affair of conscience'" of the de- 
vout believer — to the elevation of a force which exalts 
and clarifies his inner life. It is — conducted on a 
large scale and with reference to human interests as a 
whole — simply what the cult of sorcery of an earlier 
age had been in a small way and with reference to 
some particular human want : a practice which any 
one, who could bear the expense, might have put into 
motion for himself by the skilled practitioner, to en- 
rich one's self, to prolong life, to avert sickness and 
all harm. 

But here there is repeated, in matters purely of 
cult, the same characteristic which confronted us in 
another connexion. Alongside of and interwoven with 
the formations which carry the special imprint of Vedic 
culture, everywhere and often in compact masses, 
there are the remains of hoary constructions, traceable 
to remoter and even to remotest times. As just re- 
marked, it is a peculiarity of the Vedic cult of the 
sacrifice, that it concerns itself chiefly with human in- 
terests viewed as a whole ; but still it was an unavoid- 
able retention, that the supernatural forces should be 
put into action, upon occasion, for individual and par- 
ticular situations, in behalf of want or suffering at some 
particular moment. It is here that the old witchcraft 
especially retained whatever was left to it of its former 
importance, in the Vedic age. He who wished to 
drive away evil spirits, or the substance supposed to 
have brought an illness, or, similarly, some guilt, had 
recourse still, as in former ages, to fire, which con- 
sumes the hostile thing, or to water which washes it 
away, or he chased the spirits away with din and 
alarms, blows and bow-shot. He who wished to pro- 
duce rain, proceeded much like the rain-conjurer 
among the savages of our day. He put on black robes, 
and slew in sacrifice some black-colored beast, in or- 
der to attract the black clouds with which it was de- 



signed to cover the sky ; or, he threw herbs into the 
water that the grass of his pastures might be splattered 
by the divine waters. He who wished to prepare him- 
self for particularly holy rites, acted just as the mod- 
ern savage does, when he strives to transport himself 
into the exalted state in which man may enjoy com- 
munion with the gods. One about to perform the sac- 
rifice of the soma, prepared himself for his holy labor, 
clad in dark-colored skins, muttering in stuttering 
speech, fasting until "there is nothing left in him, 
nothing but skin and bones, till the black pupil disap- 
pears from his eye," maintaining his position beside 
the magic fire which frightened away the evil demons, 
thus producing within him the necessary condition of 
inner fever {iapas); a practice, which lies in the midst 
of the Vedic ritual as an unintelligible relic of by-gone 
ages, but which a modern American Indian or a Zulu 
would comprehend at once, since very similar customs 
are familiar to him. 

Thus, the religion and the cult of the Veda point 
on the one hand to the past of the savage religion ; on 
the other hand, they point forward. We have seen 
that the majority of the Vedic divinities had long since 
lost their original meaning. Indra is no more the 
thunderer ; nor Varuna the night-illuminating planet. 
For a time the faded images of the powers, which were 
once effective in their influence upon human faith, 
maintain their entity by the sheer force of pertinacity 
— similar to a movement, which, receiving no fresh 
impulse, gradually dies away. The point will come 
at which the motion will cease. The intellect, pressing 
onward, recognises other forces as the effective. New 
exigencies of the soul require to be satisfied by other 
means than those proffered by the benevolence of In- 
dra or Agni. 



" Nothing is destroyed until it is replaced." 
— Madame de Stael. 

Seeing this wise maxim in a paper by Auguste 
Comte, I asked my friend Wm. de Fonvielle, who was 
in communication with Comte, to learn for me the au- 
thorship of the phrase. Comte answered that it was 
the Emperor's (Napoleon III.). It first appeared, as 
I afterwards found, in the writings of Madame de Stael 
and more fully expressed by her. 

Self-regar<ling criticism having discovered the in- 
sufficiency of theology for the guidance of man, next 
sought to ascertain what rules human reason may sup- 
ply for the independent conduct of life — which is the 
object of Secularism. 

At first, the term was taken to be a "mask" con- 
ci>aling sinister features — a "new name for an old 
tiling"- — or as a substitute term for scepticism or athe- 

ism. If impressions were always knowledge, men 
would be wise without inquiry, and explanations would 
be unnecessary. The term Secularism was chosen to 
express the extension of free thought to ethics. Free 
thinkers commonly go no further than saying, "We 
search for truth '" — Secularists say we have found it — 
at least so much as replaces the chief errors and un- 
certainties of theology. 

Harriet Martineau, the most intrepid thinker among 
the women of her day, wrote to Lloyd Garrison a letter 
(inserted in the Liberator, 1853) approving "the term 
Secularism as including a large number of persons who 
are not atheists and uniting them for action, which has 
Secularism for its object. By the adoption of the new 
term a vast amount of prejudice is got rid of." When 
it was found that the "new term" designated a new 

Secularism is a code of duty pertaining to this life 
— founded on considerations purely human — intended 
mainly for those who find theology indefinite or inade- 
quate, unreliable or unbelievable. 

Its essential principles are three : 

1. That the improvement of this life is possible by 
material means. 

2. That science is the available^ Providence of man. 

3. That it is good to do good. Whether there be 
other good or not, the good of the present life is good, 
and it is good to seek that good. 

Individual good attained by methods conducive to 
the good of others, is the highest aim of man, whether 
regard be had to human welfare in this life or personal 
fitness for another. Precedence is threfore given to 
the duties of this life. 

Being asked to send to the International Congress 
of Liberal Thinkers, held in Brussels (1886), an ac- 
count of the tenets of the English party known as Sec- 
ularists, I gave the following explanation to them. 

"The Secular is that, issues of which can be tested 
by the experience of life. 

"The ground common to all self-determined think- 
ers is that of independency of opinion, known as free 
thought, which though but an impulse of intellectual 
courage in the search for truth — or an impulse of ag- 
gression against hurtful or irritating error — or the ca- 
price of a restless mind is to be encouraged. It is 
necessary to promote independent thought— whatever 
its manner of manifestation — since there can be no 
progress without it. A Secularist is intended to be a 

1 M, Aurelius Antoninus said, "1 seek the truth by which no man was ever 
injured." It would be true had he said mankind. Men are continually in- 
jured by the truth or how do martyrs come or why do we honor them ? 

2 The phrase was a suggestion of my friend the Rev. Dr. H. T. Crosskey 
about 1854. I afterwards used the word "available" which does not deny, 
nor challenge, nor affirm the belief of others in a theological providence — 
who therefore are not incited to assail the effectual proposition that materia] 
resources are an available providence where a spiritual providence is inac- 



reasoner — that is as Coleridge defined him — one who 
inquires what a thing is, and not only what it is, but 
■why it is what it is. 

"One of two great forces of opinion created in this 
age, is what is known as atheism, ^ which deprives su- 
perstition of its standing-ground and compels theism 
to reason for its existence. The other force is material- 
ism which shows the physical consequences of error 
supplying, as it were, beacon lights to morality. 

"Though respecting the right of the agnostic and 
theist to their theories of the origin of nature, we 
Secularists regard them as belonging to the debate- 
able ground of speculation. Secularism neither asks 
nor gives any opinion upon them, confining itself to 
the entirely independent field of study — the order of 
the universe. Neither asserting nor denying theism 
or a future life, having no sufficient reason to give if 
called upon ; the fact remains that material influences 
exist, vast and available for good, as men have the 
will and wit to employ them. Whatever may be the 
value of metaphysical or theological theories of morals, 
utility in conduct is a daily test of common sense, and 
is capable of deciding intelligently more questions of 
practical duty than any other rule. Considerations 
which pertain to the general welfare, operate without 
the machinery of theological creeds, and over masses 
of men in every land to whom Christian incentives are 
alien, or disregarded." 


Witch prosecution appears to us as rascality pure 
and simple, but it was not. It was the result of a 
firm and deep-seated religious conviction, as may be 
learned from the Antipalus maleficiorum, a work of 
John Trithemius, Abbot of the Monastery of Spong- 
heim (1442-1516), who at the request of Joachim, 
Markgrave of Brandenburg, investigated the subject, 
and after years of conscientious study presented to 
the world his views in a volume of four books, which 
was completed October 16, in the year 1508, when 
the pious abbot had reached the mature age of sixty- 
six years. 

Trithemius distinguishes four classes of wizards 
and witches: (i) Those who hurt and kill others 
through poison and other natural means. (2) Those 
who injure others by Eucunitia, which is the art of 
using magic formulas. (3) Those who converse with 
the Devil personally. (4) Those who have actually 
concluded a contract with the Devil and have thus 
procured his assistance for evil designs. Trithemius 
believes that there is no other way of protecting the 
commonwealth against the obnoxious influence of these 

1 Huxley's term agnosticism implies 
without denial. 

different thing — unknowingness 

malefactors than by extirpating them, but best by 
burning them alive. He says : 

"It is to be lamented that the number of witches in all coun- 
tries is very great, for indeed there is not a village, be it ever so 
small, without harboring at least one of the third and of the 
fourth class. But how rare are the judges who punish these 
crimes against God and nature." 

And in another passage the abbot utters the com- 
plaint : 

"Men and animals die through the infamy of these women, 
and none considers that it is due to the malignity of witchcraft. 
There are many who suffer from serious diseases and do not even 
know that they are bewitched." 

The great dangers of witchcraft seemed to demand 
extraordinary means for combating its evils ; and thus 
the torture, which had formerly been applied only in 
exceptional and special cases, began to be developed 
in a most formidable and barbaric way. 

Who can without indignation and holy wrath con- 
template the instruments of torture used by inquisi- 
tors in their infamous vocation ? There are thumb- 
screws, there are blacksmith's tongs and pincers to 
tear out the fingernails or to be used red-hot for pinch- 
ing ; there is the rack, Spanish boots, collars, chains, 
etc., there are boards and rollers covered with sharp 
spikes; there is the "Scavenger's Daughter," also the 
"Iron Virgin," a hollow instrument the size and figure 
of a woman, with knives inside which are so arranged 
that, when closing, the victim would be lacerated in 
its deadly embrace. 

What ingenuity has not been displayed in the in- 
vention of these instruments of torture ; and one of the 
executioner's swords, which still hangs in the Tortur- 
ers' Vault at Niirnberg on the left side of the door, 
shows in bad Latin the blasphemous inscription, "Solo 
Deo Gloria.'"^ 

The hangmen took pride in their profession and 
regarded it as a shame if they could not make their 
victims confess whatever the inquisitors wanted. 
Their usual threat was when a heretic, a wizard, or 
a witch was handed over to them : "You will be tor- 
tured until you are so thin that the sun will shine 
through you." The instruments look horrible enough, 
but the practice was more horrible than the wildest 
imagination can depict. 

Before the torture began, the accused were forced 
to drink the witch-broth, a disgusting drink mixed 
with the ashes of burnt witches, which was supposed 
to protect the torturers against the evil influence of 
witchcraft. The filth^ of the dungeons was a very ef- 
fective means to make the prisoner despondent and 
prepare him for any confession upon which he could 
be condemned. He was frequently locked up in iron 

1 It ought to be Soli Deo Glvriat 

2 Carceris sgualorcs is the expression of the Witch's Hammer. 



cuffs fixed in the wall or placed under heavy timbers 
which prevented the free use of his Hmbs, rendering 
him a helpless prey to rats, mice, and vermin of all 

Consider only the fiendish details of the torture 
applied to a woman in the year 163 1 on the first day 
of her trial -.^ 

" (i) The hangman binds the woman, who was pregnant, and 
places her on the rack. Then he stretches her till her heart 
would break, but had no pity on her. (2) When she did not con- 
fess, the torture was repeated, the hangman tied her hands, cut 
off her hair, poured brandy over her head and burned it. (3) He 
placed sulphur in her armpits and burned them. (4) Her hands 
were tied behind her, r.nd she was hauled up to the ceiling and 
suddenly dropped down. (5) This hauling up and dropping down 
was repeated for some hours, until the hangman and his helpers 
went to lunch. (6) When they returned, the master-hangman tied 
her feet and hands upon her back ; brandy was poured on her back 
and burned. (8) Then heavy weights were placed on her back and 
she was pulled up. (g) After this she was again stretched on the 
rack. (10) A spiked board is placed on her back, and she is again 
hauled up to the ceiling. (11) The master again ties her feet and 
hangs on them a block of fifty pounds, which makes her think that 
her heart must burst. (12) This proved insufficient ; therefore the 
master unties her feet and fixes her legs in a vise, tightening the 
jaws until the blood oozes out at the toes. (13) Nor was this suf- 
ficient; therefore she was stretched and pinched again in various 
ways. (14) Now the hangman of Dreissigacker began the third 
grade of torture. When he placed her on the bench and put the 
"shirt" on her, he said : "I do not take you for one, two, three, 
not for eight days, nor for a few weeks, but for half a year or a 
year, for your whole life, until you confess ; and if you will not 
confess, I shall torture you to death, and you shall be burned after 
all. (15) The hangman's son-in-law hauled her up to the ceiling 
by her hands. (16) The hangman of Dreissigacker whipped her 
with a horsewhip. (17) She was placed in a vise where she re- 
mained for six hours. (18) After that she was again mercilessly 
horsewhipped. This was all that was done on the first day." 

Enough ! This is not barbarous, this is not bestial, 
it is Satanic. And such deeds could be done in the 
name of God, for the sake of the religion of Jesus, 
and by the command of the highest authorities of the 
Christian Church. 

Witch prosecution with its terrors of torture and 
the fagot were only the main result of the belief in a 
personal devil. There are other consequences which, 
though less important, are sometimes bad enough in 
themselves. We mention a few of them : (i) there 
were persons who actually tried to make contracts 
with the Devil ; (2) people possessed of a lively im- 
agination began to dream that they stood in all kinds 
of relations to the Evil One. There are cases in which 
imaginary witches surrendered themselves voluntarily 
to the Inquisition ; (3) soldiers entertained the hope 
of rendering themselves bullet-proof ; and (4) there 
were plenty of fools who tried to become rich by magic. 

The most remarkable case of bestial demonolatry 
with all its incidental crimes, is recorded in the annals 

1 Translated from Konig, Ausgeburten des Menschenwahns, p. 130. See 
also Soldan, Hexenprocesse, p. 269-270. 

of France where Giles De Rais (also spelled Raiz and 
Retz), one of the greatest dignitaries of the State, a 
descendant of the highest noble families of Brittany, 
and a marshal of France, was charged with kidnap- 
ping about one hundred and fifty women and children, 
who, after being subjected to all kinds of outrages, 
were solemnly sacrificed to Satan. ^ The facts seem 
impossible but the complete records of the case are 
still extant, according to which Rais was convicted 
and executed in 1440. The history of his life has ap- 
parently contributed to the formation of the legend of 

Among the persons who gave themselves up to the 
Inquisition we mention Katharine Jung of Amdorf, 
Hessia, who confessed to her own father that she was 
a witch. The poor man regarded it as his duty to 
denounce her, and after ten days, on May 11, 1631, 
the girl was executed. 

Another case of comparatively recent date hap- 
pened in Alvebrode, Hanover. An old spinster, 
daughter of the widow Steingrob, had a brother who 
suffered from attacks of asthma. Her mother was 
blind and lame, and her sister had died of consump- 
tion. Some people in the village suggested that the 
attacks which came upon her brother were due to 
witchcraft, and at last the old spinster herself declared 
she was a witch and described her relations with the 
Devil in the minutest terms. She was convinced her- 
self that she had bewitched her mother and sister and 
could injure people by a mere glance. Anxious about 
the welfare of the villagers, she warned them to avoid 
her, and tried to drown herself in an attack of melan- 
choly, but she was rescued and imprisoned. The phy- 
sician, a sensible and humane man, declared, judging 
from bodily symptoms that she suffered from a disease 
which had confused her mind, but she could not be 
prevailed upon to submit to treatment ; she insisted 
that she was as healthy as a fish and that the Devil 
could not be driven out by medicine. She said : "It 
is in vain to try to cure a witch. I deserve death and 
shall gladly die, but please do not burn me, have me 
dispatched with the sword. Everything will be well 
when I am dead." Thereupon the physician resorted 
to a stratagem. He persuaded her that her neck was 
sword-proof, and succeeded in inducing her to take 
medicine to make her neck soft again for decapitation. 
She was then treated according to the prescriptions of 
her physician, with bodily exercise and regular diet 
and sleep until her mind improved, and she forgot 
all about witchcraft and her sword-proof neck. 

Christian Elsenreiter, a student of Passau, palmed 
off upon credulous soldiers for making them bullet- 
proof a slip of paper upon which he wrote, "Devil 
help me, body and soul I give to thee ! " The paper 

1 See Encyclo. Brit., Vol. XX., p. 258. 



had to be swallowed, and Elsenreiter claimed that he 
who would die of it within twenty four hours would 
go to hell, but he who survived would be bullet-proof 
all his life. 

A Saxon Colonel had been hit twice during his mil- 
itary career by a bullet, but in each case a Mansfeld- 
Thaler had protected him. This incident gave rise 
to the notion that Mansfeld-Thalers make one bullet- 
proof, and there was no officer in the imperial army 
during the Turkish wars who did not carry at least 
one of them about his person. The price of Mansfeld- 
Thalers at that time was fifteen times their face value. 

Various kinds of magic wands and divining-rods 
which were supposed to indicate the place where treas- 
ures lay hidden, were made in great quantities. There 
are innumerable magic formulas and exorcisms, most 
of them invoking God or the trinity, or Jesus Christ, 
in Hebrew or Latin ; especially the words Jahveh 
(J h vh) and Adonai play an important part and were 
believed to be very effective. Among the magic sym- 
bols which are met with in old documents the triangle, 
the cross, the pentagram, and the signs of the planets 
are preferred ; but other figures such as squares, hex- 
agrams, circles, and fantastic combinations of irregu- 
lar lines are also quite frequent. Conjurations were 
made according to various prescriptions ; a circle was 
drawn at midnight where two roads cross; it was lit 
with wax candles made after specific recipes. The 
conjurer had to prepare himself by fasts and prayers, 
sometimes by partaking of the holy communion at 
church, and when at last he failed to find the treasure 
or to accomplish his purpose, whatever it may have 
been, he had reason to believe that he made some 
trifling mistake in his preparations. 

The facts of witch prosecution with its kindred su- 
perstitions are an object lesson. How much mistaken 
are those who believe that religion has nothing to do 
with ethics, and that a religious conviction exercises 
no influence upon a man's conduct ! There are ethic- 
ists, professors of ethics, and ethical preachers, who 
imagine that they are able to teach ethics without re- 
ferring to religion, and to make people good without 
touching their convictions as to the nature of the world 
and the import of life. But a wrong world conception 
will beget a wrong morality ; a false religion will un- 
failingly produce bad and injurious ethics ; and even 
the grossest errors will, if they have their way, find 
expression in the grossest abominations of misguided 

The inquisitors and witch prosecutors were by no 
means scoundrels pure and simple. Most assuredly 
there were scoundrels among them ; but there is no 
doubt that the movement of the inquisition and witch 
prosecution took its origin from purer motives. It 
was to the popes and grand inquisitors and to many 

princes and other people who promoted the policy, a 
matter of conscience; they simply attended to it as a 
religious duty, sometimes even with a heavy heart 
and not without great pain. 

Torquemada, the grand inquisitor of Spain, was 
in his private life one of the purest and most con- 
scientious of men, and he was so tender-hearted that 
he was obliged to leave the inquisitorial tribunal and 
quit the room as soon as the torture of a heretic 
began. He would cry about the obstinacy of those 
who had given themselves over to Satan; but though 
his heart was bleeding, he condemned thousands and 
thousands to the crudest tortures and the most dread- 
ful death for the sake of salvation and the glory of 
God — of that monster- god in whom he believed, that 
abominable idol which was worse than the Moloch of 
ancient Phenicia. 

When complaints reached Pope Innocent III. 
about the cruelty of Conrad of Marburg, the first In- 
quisitor General of Germany, he said, "the Germans 
were always furious and therefore needed furious 
judges." Pope Leo X., referring to cases of witch- 
craft that happened in Brixen and Bergamo, grieves 
in a brief of 1521 at "the obstinacy of the culprits, 
who would rather die than confess their crimes." 
In the same document the Holy Father complains 
about the impiety of the Venetian Senate who pre- 
vented the inquisitors from performing their duties. 
And similar expressions are not unfrequent in later 
papal bulls and briefs, all of which prove that the 
horrors of the inquisition are ultimately due, not to ill 
will or even to the desire for power, but to error 
which had assumed the shape of a deep-seated re- 
ligious conviction. 

Among the Protestants, the Calvinists come near- 
est in zeal to the Roman Catholic inquisitors. In 
Geneva, Switzerland, the home of Calvin, five hun- 
dred persons were, within three months, executed for 
heresy and witchcraft. The protocols of the city in 
the year 1545 declare that the labor of torture and 
execution exceeded the strength of the hangman; and 
the complaint is made that, "whatever torture be 
applied, the malefactors still refuse to confess." 

It would not do to say with our agnostic friends that 
religion is concerned with matters unknowable ; and 
that therefore we should leave it alone ! Religion is the 
most important problem of life, and we can ignore it 
as little as a reckless storage of dynamite in crowded 
parts of great cities. We must investigate the reli- 
gious problem and replace the old errors with their 
dualistic superstitions by sound and scientifically cor- 
rect views. At the bottom of all the terrors of the 
inquisition and witch prosecution lies a serious en- 
deavor to do what is right ; and this power can be 
utilised as well for the progress and elevation of man- 



kind as for the suppression of reason and sound judg- 

The truth is that the confidence in science has al- 
ready become a religious conviction with most of us. 
The faith in scientifically provable truth has slowly, 
very slowly and by almost imperceptible degrees, but 
steadily and surely taken root in the hearts of men. 
To-day it is the most powerful factor of our civilisa- 
tion, in spite of various church dogmas which are de- 
clared to be above scientific critique and argument; 
for these dogmas are becoming a dead letter. There 
are several conservative and prominent churchmen 
who publicly confess that the dogmas of the Church 
must be regarded as historical documents and not as 
eternal verities. 

The world-conception of our industrial and social 
life, of international intercourse, and all serious move- 
ments on the lines of human progress has even now to a 
great extent practically become the religion of science, 
although the fict is not as yet definitely and openly 
acknowledged ; and any sectarian faith that endeavors 
to set forth its claim of recognition does it and can do 
it only on the ground that it is one with scientific 
truth. For there is nothing universally true, nothing 
catholic, nothing genuinely orthodox, except those 
truths that are positively demonstrated by science. 



O, great new-poet, the world waits for thee, 

To voice the wondrous hopes of all mankind ; 
To sing the matin song of the To Be ; 

To reach the heart chord of the age ; and find 
A tongue for prophecies and prayers and tears 

Of this, our time — its travail and its pain ; 
But more, to picture forth the brighter years. 

That wait across the Future's shining main. 
Thy song will echo to the busy roar 

Of life and labor, and the city's hum, — 
The spirit of these later days, — but more, 

'Twill tell the promise of the days to come. 
'Twill say, ' ' The world's year only touches spring 
And all mankind will pause to hear thee sing. 


Macmillan & Co. have made arrangements for the issue in 
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Illustrations, 121. Pages, 550. Tables, Bibliography, and Index. 

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" Be wisely worldly, but not worldly wise.' 
— Francis Quarles. 

I. Of material tneans as conditions of tvelfare in this 
world. — Theology works by "spiritual" means, Sec- 
ularism by material means. Christians and Secular- 
ists both intend raising the character of the people, 
but their methods are very different. Christians are 
now beginning to employ material agencies for the 
elevation of life, which science, and not theology, has 
brought under their notice. But the Christian does 
not trust these agencies, the Secularist does, in whose 
mind the secular is sacred. Spiritual means can never 
be depended upon for food, raiment, art, or national 

Why morality has made so little way under Chris- 
tianism, has been owing to men's attention being di- 
verted from noticing the material results of conduct 
and being led to believe that Spiritualism could en- 
sure human welfare. 

The Archbishop of York (Dr. Magee), a clear- 
headed and candid prelate, surprised his contempora- 
ries (at the Diocesan Conference, Leicester, October 
19, 1889) by declaring that "Christianity made no 
claim to rearrange the economic relations of man in 
the state, or in society. He hoped he would be un- 
derstood when he said plainly that it was his firm be- 
lief that any Christian state, carrying out in all its 
relations, the Sermon on the Mount, could not exist 
for a week. It was perfectly clear that a state could 
not continue to exist upon what were commonly called 
Christian principles." 

From the first, Secularism had based its claims to 
be regarded on the fact that only the rich could afford 
to be Christian, and the poor must look to other prin- 
ciples for deliverance. 

Material means are those which are calculable, 
which are under the control and command of man, 
and can be tested by human experience. No defini- 
tion of Secularism shows its distinctiveness which 
omits to specify material means as its method of pro- 

But for the theological blasphemy of nature, repre- 
senting it as the unintelligent tool of God, the Secular 

would have ennobled common life long ago. Sir God- 
frey Kneller said, "He never looked on a bad picture 
but he carried away in his mind a dirty tint." Secu- 
larism would efface the dirty tints of life which Chris- 
tianity has prayed over, but not removed. 

2. Of ike providence of science. — Men are limited in 
power, and oft in peril, and those who are taught to 
trust the supernatural are betrayed to their own de- 
struction. We are told we should work as though 
there were no help in heaven, and pray as though 
there were no help in ourselves. Since, however, 
praying saves no ship, arrests no disease, and does 
not pay the tax-gatherer, it is better to work at once 
and without the digression of sinking prayer-buckets 
into empty wells, and spending life in drawing noth- 
ing up. The one word illuminating secular life is self- 
help. The Secularist vexes not the ear of heaven by 
mendicant supplications. His is the only religion that 
gives heaven no trouble. 

3. Of goodness as fitness for this world or another. — 
Goodness is the service of others with a view to their 
advantage. There is no higher human merit. Human 
welfare is the sanction of morality. The measure of 
a good action is its conduciveness to progress. The 
utilitarian test of generous rightness in motive may be 
open to objection, — there is no test which is not, — 
but the utilitarian rule is one comprehensible by every 
mind. It is the only rule which makes knowledge 
necessary, and becomes more luminous as knowledge 
increases. A fool may be a believer,' but not a utili- 
tarian who seeks his ground of action in the largest 
field of relevant facts his mind is able to survey. 

Utility in morals is measuring the good of one by 
its agreement with the good of many. Large ideas 
are when a man measures the good of his parish by 
the good of the town, the good of the town by the 
good of the county, the good of the county by the 
good of the country, the good of the country by the 
good of the continent, the good of the continent by 
the cosmopolitanism of the world. 

Truth and solicitude for the social welfare of others 
are the proper concern of a soul worth saving. Only 
minds with goodness in them have the desert of future 

IThe Guar 
five idiots. 

about 1887 that the Bishop of Exeter confiri 



existence. Minds without veracity and generosity die. 
The elements of death are in the selfish already. They 
could not live in a better world if they were admitted. 
In a noble passage in his sermon on "Citizen- 
ship" the Rev. Stopford Brooks said: "There are 
thousands of my fellow-citizens, men, and women, and 
children, who are living in conditions in which they 
have no true means of becoming healthy in body, 
trained in mind, or comforted by beauty. Life is as 
hard for them as it is easy for me. I cannot help them 
by giving them money, one by one, but I can help 
them by making the condition of their life easier by a 
good government of the city in which they live. And 
even if the charge on my property for this purpose in- 
creases for a time, year by year, till the work is done, 
that charge I will gladly pay. It shall be my ethics, 
my religion, my patriotism, my citizenship to do it."^ 
The great preacher whose words are here cited, — like 
Theodore Parker, the Jupiter of the pulpit in his day, 
as Wendell Phillips described him to me, — is not a 
Secularist, but he expresses here the religion of a Sec- 
ularist, if such a person can be supposed to have a 

A theological creed which the base may hold, and 
usually do, has none of the merit of deeds of service 
to humanity, which only the good intentionally per- 
form. Conscience is the sense of right with regard to 
others, it is a sense of duty towards others which tells 
us that we should do justice to them ; and if not able 
to do it individually, to endeavor to get it done by 
others. At St. Peter's Gate there can be no passport 
so safe as this. He was not far wrong who, when 
asked where heaven lay, answered: "On the other 
side of a good action." 

If, as Dr. James Martineau says, "there is a 
thought of God in the thing that is true, and a will of 
God in that which